WorldWideScience

Sample records for reduced trophic response

  1. Striatal trophic activity is reduced in the aged rat brain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ling, Z D; Collier, T J; Sortwell, C E; Lipton, J W; Vu, T Q; Robie, H C; Carvey, P M

    2000-02-21

    Our previous studies demonstrated that the survival of a mesencephalic graft was reduced in aged animals suggesting an age-related decline in target-derived neurotrophic activity. We tested this hypothesis by examining dopamine (DA) and trophic activities from the striatum of intact or unilateral 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA) lesioned rats of increasing age. Fisher 344 rats were 4, 12, 18, and 23 months old (m.o.) at sacrifice. Half the animals had received unilateral 6-OHDA lesions of the mesostriatal DA pathway 8 weeks earlier. Striatal tissue punches were analyzed for DA, homovanillic acid (HVA), and DA activity (HVA/DA) using HPLC. The remainder of the striatal tissue was homogenized to generate tissue extracts which were added to E14.5 ventral mesencephalic cultures to test trophic activity. In the non-lesioned animals, striatal DA was reduced and striatal DA activity was increased in the 18 and 23 m.o. animals relative to the 4 and 12 m.o. animals. Striatal trophic activity was inversely related to age. In the lesioned animals, striatal DA ipsilateral to 6-OHDA infusion was below detection limits while the contralateral striatum exhibited age-related changes in DA similar to those seen in the non-lesioned animals. In 4 m.o. lesioned rats, striatal trophic activity ipsilateral to 6-OHDA infusion was elevated by 26% relative to the contralateral side. The ipsi/contra-lateral differences in striatal trophic activity were reduced in 12 m.o. animals and absent in the 18 and 23 m.o. groups. These data suggest that advancing age is associated with a reduction in striatal DA as well as trophic activity. Moreover, the aged striatum loses its ability to biochemically and trophically compensate for DA reduction and therefore may represent a more challenging environment for the survival, growth, and function of a fetal graft.

  2. Trophic level responses differ as climate warms in Ireland

    Science.gov (United States)

    Donnelly, Alison; Yu, Rong; Liu, Lingling

    2015-08-01

    Effective ecosystem functioning relies on successful species interaction. However, this delicate balance may be disrupted if species do not respond to environmental change at a similar rate. Here we examine trends in the timing of spring phenophases of groups of species occupying three trophic levels as a potential indicator of ecosystem response to climate warming in Ireland. The data sets were of varying length (1976-2009) and from varying locations: (1) timing of leaf unfolding and May Shoot of a range of broadleaf and conifer tree species, (2) first appearance dates of a range of moth species, and (3) first arrival dates of a range of spring migrant birds. All three groups revealed a statistically significant ( Psupply and demand. These differing trophic level response rates demonstrate the potential for a mismatch in the timing of interdependent phenophases as temperatures rise. Even though these data were not specifically collected to examine climate warming impacts, we conclude that such data may be used as an early warning indicator and as a means to monitor the potential for future ecosystem disruption to occur as climate warms.

  3. Ecosystem Responses To Plant Phenology Across Scales And Trophic Levels

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stoner, D.; Sexton, J. O.; Nagol, J. R.; Ironside, K.; Choate, D.; Longshore, K.; Edwards, T., Jr.

    2015-12-01

    Plant phenology in arid and semi-arid ecoregions is constrained by water availability and governs the life history characteristics of primary and secondary consumers. We related the behavior, demography, and distribution of mammalian herbivores and their principal predator to remotely sensed vegetation and climatological indices across the western United States for the period 2000-2014. Across scales, terrain and topographic position moderates the effects of climatological drought on primary productivity, resulting in differential susceptibility among plant functional types to water stress. At broad scales, herbivores tie parturition to moist sites during the period of maximum increase in local forage production. Consequently, juvenile mortality is highest in regions of extreme phenological variability. Although decoupled from primary production by one or more trophic levels, carnivore home range size and density is negatively correlated to plant productivity and growing season length. At the finest scales, predation influences the behavior of herbivore prey through compromised habitat selection, in which maternal females trade nutritional benefits of high plant biomass for reduced mortality risk associated with increased visibility. Climate projections for the western United States predict warming combined with shifts in the timing and form of precipitation. Our analyses suggest that these changes will propagate through trophic levels as increased phenological variability and shifts in plant distributions, larger consumer home ranges, altered migration behavior, and generally higher volatility in wildlife populations. Combined with expansion and intensification of human land use across the region, these changes will likely have economic implications stemming from increased human-wildlife conflict (e.g., crop damage, vehicle collisions) and changes in wildlife-related tourism.

  4. Analysis of trophic interactions reveals highly plastic response to climate change in a tri-trophic High-Arctic ecosystem

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mortensen, Lars O.; Schmidt, Niels Martin; Hoye, Toke T.

    2016-01-01

    -Arctic tri-trophic system of flowers, insects and waders (Charadriiformes), with latent factors representing phenology (timing of life history events) and performance (abundance or reproduction success) for each trophic level. The effects derived from the model demonstrated that the time of snowmelt directly...... from the tri-trophic community presented here emphasise that effects of climate on species in consumer-resource systems may propagate through trophic levels...

  5. Echinoderms display morphological and behavioural phenotypic plasticity in response to their trophic environment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hughes, Adam D; Brunner, Lars; Cook, Elizabeth J; Kelly, Maeve S; Wilson, Ben

    2012-01-01

    The trophic interactions of sea urchins are known to be the agents of phase shifts in benthic marine habitats such as tropical and temperate reefs. In temperate reefs, the grazing activity of sea urchins has been responsible for the destruction of kelp forests and the formation of 'urchin barrens', a rocky habitat dominated by crustose algae and encrusting invertebrates. Once formed, these urchin barrens can persist for decades. Trophic plasticity in the sea urchin may contribute to the stability and resilience of this alternate stable state by increasing diet breadth in sea urchins. This plasticity promotes ecological connectivity and weakens species interactions and so increases ecosystem stability. We test the hypothesis that sea urchins exhibit trophic plasticity using an approach that controls for other typically confounding environmental and genetic factors. To do this, we exposed a genetically homogenous population of sea urchins to two very different trophic environments over a period of two years. The sea urchins exhibited a wide degree of phenotypic trophic plasticity when exposed to contrasting trophic environments. The two populations developed differences in their gross morphology and the test microstructure. In addition, when challenged with unfamiliar prey, the response of each group was different. We show that sea urchins exhibit significant morphological and behavioural phenotypic plasticity independent of their environment or their nutritional status.

  6. Echinoderms display morphological and behavioural phenotypic plasticity in response to their trophic environment.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adam D Hughes

    Full Text Available The trophic interactions of sea urchins are known to be the agents of phase shifts in benthic marine habitats such as tropical and temperate reefs. In temperate reefs, the grazing activity of sea urchins has been responsible for the destruction of kelp forests and the formation of 'urchin barrens', a rocky habitat dominated by crustose algae and encrusting invertebrates. Once formed, these urchin barrens can persist for decades. Trophic plasticity in the sea urchin may contribute to the stability and resilience of this alternate stable state by increasing diet breadth in sea urchins. This plasticity promotes ecological connectivity and weakens species interactions and so increases ecosystem stability. We test the hypothesis that sea urchins exhibit trophic plasticity using an approach that controls for other typically confounding environmental and genetic factors. To do this, we exposed a genetically homogenous population of sea urchins to two very different trophic environments over a period of two years. The sea urchins exhibited a wide degree of phenotypic trophic plasticity when exposed to contrasting trophic environments. The two populations developed differences in their gross morphology and the test microstructure. In addition, when challenged with unfamiliar prey, the response of each group was different. We show that sea urchins exhibit significant morphological and behavioural phenotypic plasticity independent of their environment or their nutritional status.

  7. [Plant responses to elevated atmospheric carbon dioxide and transmission to other trophic levels]. Final report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lincoln, D.E.

    1995-10-01

    This program investigated how host plant responses to elevated atmospheric carbon dioxide may be transmitted to other trophic levels, especially leaf eating insects, and alter consumption of leaves and impare their function. Study results included the following findings: increased carbon dioxide to plants alters feeding by insect herbivores; leaves produced under higher carbon conditions contain proportionally less nitrogen; insect herbivores may have decreased reproduction under elevated carbon dioxide.

  8. Response of rotifer functional groups to changing trophic state and crustacean community

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marina MANCA

    2011-08-01

    Full Text Available Information based on taxon-based indices is species-specific while information gained from function-based research can give a comprehensive view of ecosystem processes. We applied the guild-ratio, an index based on the proportion of functional groups of rotifers (i.e. microphagous and raptorial species, on a long-term data set of Lago Maggiore. By applying seasonal trend decomposition based on smoothing techniques and non-metrical multidimensional scaling, we assessed the response of rotifer functional groups to changes in trophic state and climate. While the taxon-based indices showed smooth changes, the function-based index showed a dramatic shift from a raptorial to a microphagous dominance, with a back-shift to raptorial dominance starting in 2000. The seasonal peak of microphagous and raptorial dry weight was clearly separated in the pre-eutrophication period. When mesotrophic conditions prevailed both peaks overlapped, only to be separated again with re-oligotrophication. We attributed these alterations of rotifer functional groups to changes in competition with crustacean zooplankton and to decreased phytoplankton algal abundance and size while altered seasonality in functional groups could be related to inter-group competition for food. We hypothesise that the effects of trophic state (i.e. altered phytoplankton and climate (i.e. altered cladoceran community were transferred across trophic levels to rotifer functional groups. Our study highlights that functional groups are valid instruments for illustrating unifying principles in ecology through a better understanding of ecosystem processes and the interrelationship between trophic levels.

  9. The trophic responses of two different rodent–vector–plague systems to climate change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Lei; Schmid, Boris V.; Liu, Jun; Si, Xiaoyan; Stenseth, Nils Chr.; Zhang, Zhibin

    2015-01-01

    Plague, the causative agent of three devastating pandemics in history, is currently a re-emerging disease, probably due to climate change and other anthropogenic changes. Without understanding the response of plague systems to anthropogenic or climate changes in their trophic web, it is unfeasible to effectively predict years with high risks of plague outbreak, hampering our ability for effective prevention and control of the disease. Here, by using surveillance data, we apply structural equation modelling to reveal the drivers of plague prevalence in two very different rodent systems: those of the solitary Daurian ground squirrel and the social Mongolian gerbil. We show that plague prevalence in the Daurian ground squirrel is not detectably related to its trophic web, and that therefore surveillance efforts should focus on detecting plague directly in this ecosystem. On the other hand, plague in the Mongolian gerbil is strongly embedded in a complex, yet understandable trophic web of climate, vegetation, and rodent and flea densities, making the ecosystem suitable for more sophisticated low-cost surveillance practices, such as remote sensing. As for the trophic webs of the two rodent species, we find that increased vegetation is positively associated with higher temperatures and precipitation for both ecosystems. We furthermore find a positive association between vegetation and ground squirrel density, yet a negative association between vegetation and gerbil density. Our study thus shows how past surveillance records can be used to design and improve existing plague prevention and control measures, by tailoring them to individual plague foci. Such measures are indeed highly needed under present conditions with prevailing climate change. PMID:25540277

  10. The trophic responses of two different rodent-vector-plague systems to climate change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Lei; Schmid, Boris V; Liu, Jun; Si, Xiaoyan; Stenseth, Nils Chr; Zhang, Zhibin

    2015-02-07

    Plague, the causative agent of three devastating pandemics in history, is currently a re-emerging disease, probably due to climate change and other anthropogenic changes. Without understanding the response of plague systems to anthropogenic or climate changes in their trophic web, it is unfeasible to effectively predict years with high risks of plague outbreak, hampering our ability for effective prevention and control of the disease. Here, by using surveillance data, we apply structural equation modelling to reveal the drivers of plague prevalence in two very different rodent systems: those of the solitary Daurian ground squirrel and the social Mongolian gerbil. We show that plague prevalence in the Daurian ground squirrel is not detectably related to its trophic web, and that therefore surveillance efforts should focus on detecting plague directly in this ecosystem. On the other hand, plague in the Mongolian gerbil is strongly embedded in a complex, yet understandable trophic web of climate, vegetation, and rodent and flea densities, making the ecosystem suitable for more sophisticated low-cost surveillance practices, such as remote sensing. As for the trophic webs of the two rodent species, we find that increased vegetation is positively associated with higher temperatures and precipitation for both ecosystems. We furthermore find a positive association between vegetation and ground squirrel density, yet a negative association between vegetation and gerbil density. Our study thus shows how past surveillance records can be used to design and improve existing plague prevention and control measures, by tailoring them to individual plague foci. Such measures are indeed highly needed under present conditions with prevailing climate change. © 2014 The Author(s) Published by the Royal Society. All rights reserved.

  11. A Rapid Induction Mechanism for Lin28a in Trophic Responses.

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    Amen, Alexandra M; Ruiz-Garzon, Claudia R; Shi, Jay; Subramanian, Megha; Pham, Daniel L; Meffert, Mollie K

    2017-02-02

    Environmental cues provoke rapid transitions in gene expression to support growth and cellular plasticity through incompletely understood mechanisms. Lin28 RNA-binding proteins have evolutionarily conserved roles in post-transcriptional coordination of pro-growth gene expression, but signaling pathways allowing trophic stimuli to induce Lin28 have remained uncharacterized. We find that Lin28a protein exhibits rapid basal turnover in neurons and that mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK)-dependent phosphorylation of the RNA-silencing factor HIV TAR-RNA-binding protein (TRBP) promotes binding and stabilization of Lin28a, but not Lin28b, with an accompanying reduction in Lin28-regulated miRNAs, downstream of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF). Binding of Lin28a to TRBP in vitro is also enhanced by phospho-mimic TRBP. Further, phospho-TRBP recapitulates BDNF-induced neuronal dendritic spine growth in a Lin28a-dependent manner. Finally, we demonstrate MAPK-dependent TRBP and Lin28a induction, with physiological function in growth and survival, downstream of diverse growth factors in multiple primary cell types, supporting a broad role for this pathway in trophic responses. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  12. Responses of Cryptofaunal Species Richness and Trophic Potential to Coral Reef Habitat Degradation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Derek P. Manzello

    2012-02-01

    Full Text Available Coral reefs are declining worldwide as a result of many anthropogenic disturbances. This trend is alarming because coral reefs are hotspots of marine biodiversity and considered the ‘rainforests of the sea. As in the rainforest, much of the diversity on a coral reef is cryptic, remaining hidden among the cracks and crevices of structural taxa. Although the cryptofauna make up the majority of a reef’s metazoan biodiversity, we know little about their basic ecology or how these communities respond to reef degradation. Emerging research shows that the species richness of the motile cryptofauna is higher among dead (framework vs. live coral substrates and, surprisingly, increases within successively more eroded reef framework structures, ultimately reaching a maximum in dead coral rubble. Consequently, the paradigm that abundant live coral is the apex of reef diversity needs to be clarified. This provides guarded optimism amidst alarming reports of declines in live coral cover and the impending doom of coral reefs, as motile cryptic biodiversity should persist independent of live coral cover. Granted, the maintenance of this high species richness is contingent on the presence of reef rubble, which will eventually be lost due to physical, chemical, and biological erosion if not replenished by live coral calcification and mortality. The trophic potential of a reef, as inferred from the abundance of cryptic organisms, is highest on live coral. Among dead framework substrates, however, the density of cryptofauna reaches a peak at intermediate levels of degradation. In summary, the response of the motile cryptofauna, and thus a large fraction of the reef’s biodiversity, to reef degradation is more complex and nuanced than currently thought; such that species richness may be less sensitive than overall trophic function.

  13. Behavioural and physiological responses of limpet prey to a seastar predator and their transmission to basal trophic levels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Manzur, Tatiana; Vidal, Francisco; Pantoja, José F; Fernández, Miriam; Navarrete, Sergio A

    2014-07-01

    Besides the well-documented behavioural changes induced by predators on prey, predator-induced stress can also include a suite of biochemical, neurological and metabolic changes that may represent important energetic costs and have long-lasting effects on individuals and on the demography of prey populations. The rapid transmission of prey behavioural changes to lower trophic levels, usually associated with alteration of feeding rates, can substantially change and even reverse direction over the long term as prey cope with the energetic costs associated with predation-induced stress. It is therefore critical to evaluate different aspects and assess the costs of non-consumptive predator effects on prey. We investigated the behavioural and physiological responses of an herbivorous limpet, Fissurella limbata, to the presence of chemical cues and direct non-lethal contact by the common seastar predator, Heliaster helianthus. We also evaluated whether the limpets feeding behaviour was modified by the predator and whether this translated into positive or negative effects on biomass of the green alga, Ulva sp. Our experimental results show the presence of Heliaster led to increased movement activity, increased distances travelled, changes in time budget over different environmental conditions and increased feeding rate in the keyhole limpets. Moreover, additional experiments showed that, beyond the increased metabolic rate associated with limpet increased activity, predator chemical cues heighten metabolic rate as part of the induced stress response. Changes in individual movement and displacement distances observed through the 9-day experiment can be interpreted as part of the escape response exhibited by limpets to reduce the risk of being captured by the predator. Increased limpet feeding rate on algae can be visualized as a way individuals compensate for the elevated energetic costs of movement and heightened metabolic rates produced by the predator-induced stress

  14. Changes in the trophic status of fish feeding guilds in response to flow modification

    Science.gov (United States)

    Delong, M. D.; Thoms, M. C.

    2016-03-01

    Rivers are among the most extensively modified ecosystems globally. Identifying linkages between critical drivers of change and ecological response is challenging because of the myriad of ways rivers are modified. This study examines longer-term relationships (>70 years) between the trophic status of fish and historical flow changes in rivers of the Mississippi Basin. The flow regime of each river is regulated but differs in terms of character of hydrological modification. Tissue samples from specimens obtained from museum collections were used for determination of carbon and nitrogen stable isotope ratios. Questions asked were as follows: (1) Are there differences in stable isotope ratios of fish feeding guilds prior to and following hydrological modification? (2) What hydrological attributes are associated with isotopic changes? And (3) are corresponding changes in stable isotope ratios and hydrology identifiable across different spatial scales? Significant and sustained changes in stable isotope ratios of fish feeding guilds occurred immediately following flow regulation in all rivers. These changes were not associated with human-induced biogeochemical alterations. The subsequent response was complex because (1) different guilds exhibited pronounced shifts in isotopic ratios, (2) hydrological modification differed between rivers, and (3) differences in stable isotopic ratios varied between spatial scales.

  15. Does trophic status enhance or reduce the thermal tolerance of scleractinian corals? A review, experiment and conceptual framework.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fabricius, Katharina E; Cséke, Szilvia; Humphrey, Craig; De'ath, Glenn

    2013-01-01

    Global warming, and nutrient and sediment runoff from coastal development, both exert increasing pressures on coastal coral reefs. The objective of this study was to resolve the question of whether coastal eutrophication may protect corals from thermal stress by improving their nutritional status, or rather diminish their thermal tolerance through the synergy of dual stressors. A review of previous studies on the topic of combined trophic status and heat exposure on the thermal tolerance of corals reveals a broad range of outcomes, including synergistic, additive and antagonistic effects. We conducted a 90-day long experiment exposing corals to realistic levels of elevated nutrients and sediments, and heat stress. Colonies of two common scleractinian corals (Acropora millepora and Montipora tuberculosa) were kept in coastal seawater, or coastal seawater that was further organically and nutrient enriched (OE), and/or enriched with nitrate. Batches of OE were created daily, facilitating nutrient uptake, plankton succession and organic enrichment as observed in coastal waters. After 10 days of acclimation, 67% of the colonies had their temperature gradually increased from 27° to 31.2°C. After 3-7 weeks of heat stress, colonies of both species had significantly greater reductions in fluorescence yields and lower survival in OE than without addition of OE. Furthermore, photophysiological recovery was incomplete 31-38 days after ending the heat stress only in the OE treatments. Nitrate alone had no measurable effect on survival, bleaching and recovery in either species. Skeletal growth rates were reduced by 45% in heat-stressed A. millepora and by 24% in OE-exposed M. tuberculosa. We propose a conceptual trophic framework that resolves some of the apparently contradictory outcomes revealed by the review. Our study shows that management actions to reduce coastal eutrophication can improve the resistance and resilience of vulnerable coastal coral reefs to warming

  16. Does trophic status enhance or reduce the thermal tolerance of scleractinian corals? A review, experiment and conceptual framework.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Katharina E Fabricius

    Full Text Available Global warming, and nutrient and sediment runoff from coastal development, both exert increasing pressures on coastal coral reefs. The objective of this study was to resolve the question of whether coastal eutrophication may protect corals from thermal stress by improving their nutritional status, or rather diminish their thermal tolerance through the synergy of dual stressors. A review of previous studies on the topic of combined trophic status and heat exposure on the thermal tolerance of corals reveals a broad range of outcomes, including synergistic, additive and antagonistic effects. We conducted a 90-day long experiment exposing corals to realistic levels of elevated nutrients and sediments, and heat stress. Colonies of two common scleractinian corals (Acropora millepora and Montipora tuberculosa were kept in coastal seawater, or coastal seawater that was further organically and nutrient enriched (OE, and/or enriched with nitrate. Batches of OE were created daily, facilitating nutrient uptake, plankton succession and organic enrichment as observed in coastal waters. After 10 days of acclimation, 67% of the colonies had their temperature gradually increased from 27° to 31.2°C. After 3-7 weeks of heat stress, colonies of both species had significantly greater reductions in fluorescence yields and lower survival in OE than without addition of OE. Furthermore, photophysiological recovery was incomplete 31-38 days after ending the heat stress only in the OE treatments. Nitrate alone had no measurable effect on survival, bleaching and recovery in either species. Skeletal growth rates were reduced by 45% in heat-stressed A. millepora and by 24% in OE-exposed M. tuberculosa. We propose a conceptual trophic framework that resolves some of the apparently contradictory outcomes revealed by the review. Our study shows that management actions to reduce coastal eutrophication can improve the resistance and resilience of vulnerable coastal coral reefs

  17. Geochemistry, faunal composition and trophic structure in reducing sediments on the South West South Georgia margin

    OpenAIRE

    Bell, JB; Aquilina, A.; Woulds, C; Glover, AG; Little, CTS; Reid, WDK; Hepburn, LE; Newton, J; Mills, RA

    2016-01-01

    Despite a number of studies in areas of focused methane seepage, the extent of transitional sediments of more diffuse methane seepage, and their influence upon biological communities is poorly understood. We investigated an area of reducing sediments with elevated levels of methane on the South Georgia margin around 250 m depth and report data from a series of geochemical and biological analyses. Here, the geochemical signatures were consistent with weak methane seepage and the role of sub-su...

  18. Geochemistry, faunal composition and trophic structure in reducing sediments on the southwest South Georgia margin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bell, James B; Aquilina, Alfred; Woulds, Clare; Glover, Adrian G; Little, Crispin T S; Reid, William D K; Hepburn, Laura E; Newton, Jason; Mills, Rachel A

    2016-09-01

    Despite a number of studies in areas of focused methane seepage, the extent of transitional sediments of more diffuse methane seepage, and their influence upon biological communities is poorly understood. We investigated an area of reducing sediments with elevated levels of methane on the South Georgia margin around 250 m depth and report data from a series of geochemical and biological analyses. Here, the geochemical signatures were consistent with weak methane seepage and the role of sub-surface methane consumption was clearly very important, preventing gas emissions into bottom waters. As a result, the contribution of methane-derived carbon to the microbial and metazoan food webs was very limited, although sulfur isotopic signatures indicated a wider range of dietary contributions than was apparent from carbon isotope ratios. Macrofaunal assemblages had high dominance and were indicative of reducing sediments, with many taxa common to other similar environments and no seep-endemic fauna, indicating transitional assemblages. Also similar to other cold seep areas, there were samples of authigenic carbonate, but rather than occurring as pavements or sedimentary concretions, these carbonates were restricted to patches on the shells of Axinulus antarcticus (Bivalvia, Thyasiridae), which is suggestive of microbe-metazoan interactions.

  19. Geochemistry, faunal composition and trophic structure in reducing sediments on the southwest South Georgia margin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aquilina, Alfred; Woulds, Clare; Glover, Adrian G.; Little, Crispin T. S.; Hepburn, Laura E.; Newton, Jason; Mills, Rachel A.

    2016-01-01

    Despite a number of studies in areas of focused methane seepage, the extent of transitional sediments of more diffuse methane seepage, and their influence upon biological communities is poorly understood. We investigated an area of reducing sediments with elevated levels of methane on the South Georgia margin around 250 m depth and report data from a series of geochemical and biological analyses. Here, the geochemical signatures were consistent with weak methane seepage and the role of sub-surface methane consumption was clearly very important, preventing gas emissions into bottom waters. As a result, the contribution of methane-derived carbon to the microbial and metazoan food webs was very limited, although sulfur isotopic signatures indicated a wider range of dietary contributions than was apparent from carbon isotope ratios. Macrofaunal assemblages had high dominance and were indicative of reducing sediments, with many taxa common to other similar environments and no seep-endemic fauna, indicating transitional assemblages. Also similar to other cold seep areas, there were samples of authigenic carbonate, but rather than occurring as pavements or sedimentary concretions, these carbonates were restricted to patches on the shells of Axinulus antarcticus (Bivalvia, Thyasiridae), which is suggestive of microbe–metazoan interactions. PMID:27703692

  20. Marine reserves reduce risk of climate-driven phase shift by reinstating size- and habitat-specific trophic interactions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ling, S D; Johnson, C R

    2012-06-01

    Spatial closures in the marine environment are widely accepted as effective conservation and fisheries management tools. Given increasing human-derived stressors acting on marine ecosystems, the need for such effective action is urgently clear. Here we explore mechanisms underlying the utility of marine reserves to reinstate trophic dynamics and to increase resilience of kelp beds against climate-driven phase shift to sea urchin barrens on the rapidly warming Tasmanian east coast. Tethering and tagging experiments were used to examine size- and shelter-specific survival of the range-extending sea urchin Centrostephanus rodgersii (Diadematidae) translocated to reefs inside and outside no-take Tasmanian marine reserves. Results show that survival rates of C. rodgersii exposed on flat reef substratum by tethering were approximately seven times (small urchins 10.1 times; large urchins 6.1 times) lower on protected reef within marine reserve boundaries (high abundance of large predatory-capable lobsters) compared to fished reef (large predatory lobsters absent). When able to seek crevice shelter, tag-resighting models estimated that mortality rates of C. rodgersii were lower overall but remained 3.3 times (small urchins 2.1 times; large urchins 6.4 times) higher in the presence of large lobsters inside marine reserves, with higher survival of small urchins owing to greater access to crevices relative to large urchins. Indeed, shelter was 6.3 times and 3.1 times more important to survival of small and large urchins, respectively, on reserved relative to fished reef. Experimental results corroborate with surveys throughout the range extension region, showing greater occurrence of overgrazing on high-relief rocky habitats where shelter for C. rodgersii is readily available. This shows that ecosystem impacts mediated by range extension of such habitat-modifying organisms will be heterogeneous in space, and that marine systems with a more natural complement of large and thus

  1. Environmental forcing on life history strategies: Evidence for multi-trophic level responses at ocean basin scales

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suryan, Robert M.; Saba, Vincent S.; Wallace, Bryan P.; Hatch, Scott A.; Frederiksen, Morten; Wanless, Sarah

    2009-01-01

    Variation in life history traits of organisms is thought to reflect adaptations to environmental forcing occurring from bottom-up and top-down processes. Such variation occurs not only among, but also within species, indicating demographic plasticity in response to environmental conditions. From a broad literature review, we present evidence for ocean basin- and large marine ecosystem-scale variation in intra-specific life history traits, with similar responses occurring among trophic levels from relatively short-lived secondary producers to very long-lived apex predators. Between North Atlantic and North Pacific Ocean basins, for example, species in the Eastern Pacific exhibited either later maturation, lower fecundity, and/or greater annual survival than conspecifics in the Western Atlantic. Parallel variations in life histories among trophic levels also occur in adjacent seas and between eastern vs. western ocean boundaries. For example, zooplankton and seabird species in cooler Barents Sea waters exhibit lower fecundity or greater annual survival than conspecifics in the Northeast Atlantic. Sea turtles exhibit a larger size and a greater reproductive output in the Western Pacific vs. Eastern Pacific. These examples provide evidence for food-web-wide modifications in life history strategies in response to environmental forcing. We hypothesize that such dichotomies result from frequency and amplitude shifts in resource availability over varying temporal and spatial scales. We review data that supports three primary mechanisms by which environmental forcing affects life history strategies: (1) food-web structure; (2) climate variability affecting the quantity and seasonality of primary productivity; (3) bottom-up vs. top-down forcing. These proposed mechanisms provide a framework for comparisons of ecosystem function among oceanic regions (or regimes) and are essential in modeling ecosystem response to climate change, as well as for creating dynamic ecosystem

  2. Metabolic and trophic interactions modulate methane production by Arctic peat microbiota in response to warming.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tveit, Alexander Tøsdal; Urich, Tim; Frenzel, Peter; Svenning, Mette Marianne

    2015-05-12

    Arctic permafrost soils store large amounts of soil organic carbon (SOC) that could be released into the atmosphere as methane (CH4) in a future warmer climate. How warming affects the complex microbial network decomposing SOC is not understood. We studied CH4 production of Arctic peat soil microbiota in anoxic microcosms over a temperature gradient from 1 to 30 °C, combining metatranscriptomic, metagenomic, and targeted metabolic profiling. The CH4 production rate at 4 °C was 25% of that at 25 °C and increased rapidly with temperature, driven by fast adaptations of microbial community structure, metabolic network of SOC decomposition, and trophic interactions. Below 7 °C, syntrophic propionate oxidation was the rate-limiting step for CH4 production; above this threshold temperature, polysaccharide hydrolysis became rate limiting. This change was associated with a shift within the functional guild for syntrophic propionate oxidation, with Firmicutes being replaced by Bacteroidetes. Correspondingly, there was a shift from the formate- and H2-using Methanobacteriales to Methanomicrobiales and from the acetotrophic Methanosarcinaceae to Methanosaetaceae. Methanogenesis from methylamines, probably stemming from degradation of bacterial cells, became more important with increasing temperature and corresponded with an increased relative abundance of predatory protists of the phylum Cercozoa. We concluded that Arctic peat microbiota responds rapidly to increased temperatures by modulating metabolic and trophic interactions so that CH4 is always highly produced: The microbial community adapts through taxonomic shifts, and cascade effects of substrate availability cause replacement of functional guilds and functional changes within taxa.

  3. Fracked ecology: Response of aquatic trophic structure and mercury biomagnification dynamics in the Marcellus Shale Formation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grant, Christopher James; Lutz, Allison K; Kulig, Aaron D; Stanton, Mitchell R

    2016-12-01

    Unconventional natural gas development and hydraulic fracturing practices (fracking) are increasing worldwide due to global energy demands. Research has only recently begun to assess fracking impacts to surrounding environments, and very little research is aimed at determining effects on aquatic biodiversity and contaminant biomagnification. Twenty-seven remotely-located streams in Pennsylvania's Marcellus Shale basin were sampled during June and July of 2012 and 2013. At each stream, stream physiochemical properties, trophic biodiversity, and structure and mercury levels were assessed. We used δ15N, δ13C, and methyl mercury to determine whether changes in methyl mercury biomagnification were related to the fracking occurring within the streams' watersheds. While we observed no difference in rates of biomagnificaion related to within-watershed fracking activities, we did observe elevated methyl mercury concentrations that were influenced by decreased stream pH, elevated dissolved stream water Hg values, decreased macroinvertebrate Index for Biotic Integrity scores, and lower Ephemeroptera, Plecoptera, and Trichoptera macroinvertebrate richness at stream sites where fracking had occurred within their watershed. We documented the loss of scrapers from streams with the highest well densities, and no fish or no fish diversity at streams with documented frackwater fluid spills. Our results suggest fracking has the potential to alter aquatic biodiversity and methyl mercury concentrations at the base of food webs.

  4. Catchment land-use effects on littoral macroinvertebrates in response to local habitat structure and trophic state

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    McGoff, Elaine; Sandin, Leif Leonard

    2012-01-01

    macroinvertebrate community structure: trophic status, substrate variables or riparian variables. We also investigated what influence each of these groups of variables has on the other. The impact of large scale land use patterns was also investigated, to determine if macroinvertebrates responded differently in two...... different catchment land use types: impaired and unimpaired. Partial canonical ordination analysis showed that substrate variables were the most important for describing macroinvertebrate community variation in both catchment land use classes, followed by riparian descriptors, with the trophic signal only....... The macroinvertebrate community composition was also responding to changes in riparian vegetation, specifically the presence of riparian trees and canopy cover. These variables, or lack of, are possible proxies for anthropogenic alteration of lake shores. Therefore, although macroinvertebrates may not be strong...

  5. Biomass changes and trophic amplification of plankton in a warmer ocean.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chust, Guillem; Allen, J Icarus; Bopp, Laurent; Schrum, Corinna; Holt, Jason; Tsiaras, Kostas; Zavatarelli, Marco; Chifflet, Marina; Cannaby, Heather; Dadou, Isabelle; Daewel, Ute; Wakelin, Sarah L; Machu, Eric; Pushpadas, Dhanya; Butenschon, Momme; Artioli, Yuri; Petihakis, George; Smith, Chris; Garçon, Veronique; Goubanova, Katerina; Le Vu, Briac; Fach, Bettina A; Salihoglu, Baris; Clementi, Emanuela; Irigoien, Xabier

    2014-07-01

    Ocean warming can modify the ecophysiology and distribution of marine organisms, and relationships between species, with nonlinear interactions between ecosystem components potentially resulting in trophic amplification. Trophic amplification (or attenuation) describe the propagation of a hydroclimatic signal up the food web, causing magnification (or depression) of biomass values along one or more trophic pathways. We have employed 3-D coupled physical-biogeochemical models to explore ecosystem responses to climate change with a focus on trophic amplification. The response of phytoplankton and zooplankton to global climate-change projections, carried out with the IPSL Earth System Model by the end of the century, is analysed at global and regional basis, including European seas (NE Atlantic, Barents Sea, Baltic Sea, Black Sea, Bay of Biscay, Adriatic Sea, Aegean Sea) and the Eastern Boundary Upwelling System (Benguela). Results indicate that globally and in Atlantic Margin and North Sea, increased ocean stratification causes primary production and zooplankton biomass to decrease in response to a warming climate, whilst in the Barents, Baltic and Black Seas, primary production and zooplankton biomass increase. Projected warming characterized by an increase in sea surface temperature of 2.29 ± 0.05 °C leads to a reduction in zooplankton and phytoplankton biomasses of 11% and 6%, respectively. This suggests negative amplification of climate driven modifications of trophic level biomass through bottom-up control, leading to a reduced capacity of oceans to regulate climate through the biological carbon pump. Simulations suggest negative amplification is the dominant response across 47% of the ocean surface and prevails in the tropical oceans; whilst positive trophic amplification prevails in the Arctic and Antarctic oceans. Trophic attenuation is projected in temperate seas. Uncertainties in ocean plankton projections, associated to the use of single global and

  6. Biomass changes and trophic amplification of plankton in a warmer ocean

    KAUST Repository

    Chust, Guillem

    2014-05-07

    Ocean warming can modify the ecophysiology and distribution of marine organisms, and relationships between species, with nonlinear interactions between ecosystem components potentially resulting in trophic amplification. Trophic amplification (or attenuation) describe the propagation of a hydroclimatic signal up the food web, causing magnification (or depression) of biomass values along one or more trophic pathways. We have employed 3-D coupled physical-biogeochemical models to explore ecosystem responses to climate change with a focus on trophic amplification. The response of phytoplankton and zooplankton to global climate-change projections, carried out with the IPSL Earth System Model by the end of the century, is analysed at global and regional basis, including European seas (NE Atlantic, Barents Sea, Baltic Sea, Black Sea, Bay of Biscay, Adriatic Sea, Aegean Sea) and the Eastern Boundary Upwelling System (Benguela). Results indicate that globally and in Atlantic Margin and North Sea, increased ocean stratification causes primary production and zooplankton biomass to decrease in response to a warming climate, whilst in the Barents, Baltic and Black Seas, primary production and zooplankton biomass increase. Projected warming characterized by an increase in sea surface temperature of 2.29 ± 0.05 °C leads to a reduction in zooplankton and phytoplankton biomasses of 11% and 6%, respectively. This suggests negative amplification of climate driven modifications of trophic level biomass through bottom-up control, leading to a reduced capacity of oceans to regulate climate through the biological carbon pump. Simulations suggest negative amplification is the dominant response across 47% of the ocean surface and prevails in the tropical oceans; whilst positive trophic amplification prevails in the Arctic and Antarctic oceans. Trophic attenuation is projected in temperate seas. Uncertainties in ocean plankton projections, associated to the use of single global and

  7. Response in the trophic state of stratified lakes to changes in hydrology and water level: potential effects of climate change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robertson, Dale M.; Rose, William J.

    2011-01-01

    To determine how climate-induced changes in hydrology and water level may affect the trophic state (productivity) of stratified lakes, two relatively pristine dimictic temperate lakes in Wisconsin, USA, were examined. Both are closed-basin lakes that experience changes in water level and degradation in water quality during periods of high water. One, a seepage lake with no inlets or outlets, has a small drainage basin and hydrology dominated by precipitation and groundwater exchange causing small changes in water and phosphorus (P) loading, which resulted in small changes in water level, P concentrations, and productivity. The other, a terminal lake with inlets but no outlets, has a large drainage basin and hydrology dominated by runoff causing large changes in water and P loading, which resulted in large changes in water level, P concentrations, and productivity. Eutrophication models accurately predicted the effects of changes in hydrology, P loading, and water level on their trophic state. If climate changes, larger changes in hydrology and water levels than previously observed could occur. If this causes increased water and P loading, stratified (dimictic and monomictic) lakes are expected to experience higher water levels and become more eutrophic, especially those with large developed drainage basins.

  8. Estimating Reduced Consumption for Dynamic Demand Response

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Chelmis, Charalampos [Univ. of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA (United States); Aman, Saima [Univ. of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA (United States); Saeed, Muhammad Rizwan [Univ. of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA (United States); Frincu, Marc [Univ. of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA (United States); Prasanna, Viktor K. [Univ. of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA (United States)

    2015-01-30

    Growing demand is straining our existing electricity generation facilities and requires active participation of the utility and the consumers to achieve energy sustainability. One of the most effective and widely used ways to achieve this goal in the smart grid is demand response (DR), whereby consumers reduce their electricity consumption in response to a request sent from the utility whenever it anticipates a peak in demand. To successfully plan and implement demand response, the utility requires reliable estimate of reduced consumption during DR. This also helps in optimal selection of consumers and curtailment strategies during DR. While much work has been done on predicting normal consumption, reduced consumption prediction is an open problem that is under-studied. In this paper, we introduce and formalize the problem of reduced consumption prediction, and discuss the challenges associated with it. We also describe computational methods that use historical DR data as well as pre-DR conditions to make such predictions. Our experiments are conducted in the real-world setting of a university campus microgrid, and our preliminary results set the foundation for more detailed modeling.

  9. Responses of lower trophic-level organisms to typhoon passage on the outer shelf of the East China Sea: an incubation experiment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    N. Yasuki

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available Typhoons can induce vertical mixing, upwelling, or both in the water column due to strong wind stress. These events can induce phytoplankton blooms in the oligotrophic ocean after typhoon passage. However, little is known about the responses of lower trophic-level organisms or changes in the community structure following the passage of typhoons, particularly in offshore regions. Therefore, we evaluated community succession on the outer shelf of the East China Sea through on-deck bottle incubation experiments simulating hydrographic conditions after the passage of a typhoon. Under all of the experimental conditions we tested, chlorophyll a concentrations increased more than 9-fold within 6 days, and these algal cells were mainly composed of large diatoms (>10 μm. Ciliates also increased along with the diatom bloom. These results suggest that increases in diatom and ciliate populations may enhance biogenic carbon export in the water column. Typhoons can affect not only phytoplankton productivity, but also the composition of lower trophic-level organisms and biogeochemical processes in oligotrophic offshore regions.

  10. Stable Isotopes Reveal Trophic Partitioning and Trophic Plasticity of a Larval Amphibian Guild

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arribas, Rosa; Díaz-Paniagua, Carmen; Caut, Stephane; Gomez-Mestre, Ivan

    2015-01-01

    Temporary ponds are highly variable systems where resource availability and community structure change extensively over time, and consequently the food web is highly dynamic. Amphibians play a critical role both as consumers and prey in aquatic communities and yet there is still little information on the trophic status of most amphibians. More importantly, little is known about the extent to which they can alter their trophic ecology in response to changing conditions. We experimentally investigated the effects of increased amphibian density, presence of intraguild competitors, and presence of native and invasive predators (either free or caged) on the trophic status of a Mediterranean amphibian guild, using stable isotopes. We observed variations in δ13C and δ15N isotopic values among amphibian species and treatments and differences in their food sources. Macrophytes were the most important food resource for spadefoot toad tadpoles (Pelobates cultripes) and relatively important for all anurans within the guild. High density and presence of P. cultripes tadpoles markedly reduced macrophyte biomass, forcing tadpoles to increase their feeding on detritus, algae and zooplankton, resulting in lower δ13C values. Native dytiscid predators only changed the isotopic signature of newts whereas invasive red swamp crayfish had an enormous impact on environmental conditions and greatly affected the isotopic values of amphibians. Crayfish forced tadpoles to increase detritus ingestion or other resources depleted in δ13C. We found that the opportunistic amphibian feeding was greatly conditioned by intra- and interspecific competition whereas non-consumptive predator effects were negligible. Determining the trophic plasticity of amphibians can help us understand natural and anthropogenic changes in aquatic ecosystems and assess amphibians’ ability to adjust to different environmental conditions. PMID:26091281

  11. Stable Isotopes Reveal Trophic Partitioning and Trophic Plasticity of a Larval Amphibian Guild.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rosa Arribas

    Full Text Available Temporary ponds are highly variable systems where resource availability and community structure change extensively over time, and consequently the food web is highly dynamic. Amphibians play a critical role both as consumers and prey in aquatic communities and yet there is still little information on the trophic status of most amphibians. More importantly, little is known about the extent to which they can alter their trophic ecology in response to changing conditions. We experimentally investigated the effects of increased amphibian density, presence of intraguild competitors, and presence of native and invasive predators (either free or caged on the trophic status of a Mediterranean amphibian guild, using stable isotopes. We observed variations in δ13C and δ15N isotopic values among amphibian species and treatments and differences in their food sources. Macrophytes were the most important food resource for spadefoot toad tadpoles (Pelobates cultripes and relatively important for all anurans within the guild. High density and presence of P. cultripes tadpoles markedly reduced macrophyte biomass, forcing tadpoles to increase their feeding on detritus, algae and zooplankton, resulting in lower δ13C values. Native dytiscid predators only changed the isotopic signature of newts whereas invasive red swamp crayfish had an enormous impact on environmental conditions and greatly affected the isotopic values of amphibians. Crayfish forced tadpoles to increase detritus ingestion or other resources depleted in δ13C. We found that the opportunistic amphibian feeding was greatly conditioned by intra- and interspecific competition whereas non-consumptive predator effects were negligible. Determining the trophic plasticity of amphibians can help us understand natural and anthropogenic changes in aquatic ecosystems and assess amphibians' ability to adjust to different environmental conditions.

  12. Trophic ulcers in the carpal tunnel syndrome

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Abelardo Q.-C. Araújo

    1993-09-01

    Full Text Available A patient with carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS and trophic ulcers is described. Despite the healing of the ulcers after surgery for CTS, the severe sensory deficit and the electrophysiological tests have not shown any significant improvement. We think these findings argue against the hypothesis of the sensory deficit being responsible for the trophic ulcers. We favor a major role for the sympathetic disturbances as the main cause for those lesions.

  13. Fifty hertz extremely low-frequency magnetic field exposure elicits redox and trophic response in rat-cortical neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Di Loreto, Silvia; Falone, Stefano; Caracciolo, Valentina; Sebastiani, Pierluigi; D'Alessandro, Antonella; Mirabilio, Alessandro; Zimmitti, Vincenzo; Amicarelli, Fernanda

    2009-05-01

    Large research activity has raised around the mechanisms of interaction between extremely low-frequency magnetic fields (ELF-MFs) and biological systems. ELF-MFs may interfere with chemical reactions involving reactive oxygen species (ROS), thus facilitating oxidative damages in living cells. Cortical neurons are particularly susceptible to oxidative stressors and are also highly dependent on the specific factors and proteins governing neuronal development, activity and survival. The aim of the present work was to investigate the effects of exposures to two different 50 Hz sinusoidal ELF-MFs intensities (0.1 and 1 mT) in maturing rat cortical neurons' major anti-oxidative enzymatic and non-enzymatic cellular protection systems, membrane peroxidative damage, as well as growth factor, and cytokine expression pattern. Briefly, our results showed that ELF-MFs affected positively the cell viability and concomitantly reduced the levels of apoptotic death in rat neuronal primary cultures, with no significant effects on the main anti-oxidative defences. Interestingly, linear regression analysis suggested a positive correlation between reduced glutathione (GSH) and ROS levels in 1 mT MF-exposed cells. On this basis, our hypothesis is that GSH could play an important role in the antioxidant defence towards the ELF-MF-induced redox challenge. Moreover, the GSH-based cellular response was achieved together with a brain-derived neurotrophic factor over-expression as well as with the interleukin 1beta-dependent regulation of pro-survival signaling pathways after ELF-MF exposure.

  14. Green Turtle Trophic Ecology

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — SWFSC is currently conducting a study of green sea turtle (Chelonia mydas) trophic ecology in the eastern Pacific. Tissue samples and stable carbon and stable...

  15. Lepidoptera Larvae as an Indicator of Multi-trophic Level Responses to Changing Seasonality in an Arctic Tundra Ecosystem

    Science.gov (United States)

    Daly, K. M.; Steltzer, H.; Boelman, N.; Weintraub, M. N.; Darrouzet-Nardi, A.; Wallenstein, M. D.; Sullivan, P.; Gough, L.; Rich, M.; Hendrix, C.; Kielland, K.; Philip, K.; Doak, P.; Ferris, C.; Sikes, D.

    2011-12-01

    Earlier snowmelt and warming temperatures in the Arctic will impact multiple trophic levels through the timing and availability of food resources. Lepidoptera are a vital link within the ecosystem; their roles include pollinator, parasitized host for other pollinating insects, and essential food source for migrating birds and their fledglings. Multiple environmental cues including temperature initiate plant growth, and in turn, trigger the emergence of Lepidoptera and the migrations of birds. If snowmelt is accelerated and temperature is increased, it is expected that the Lepidoptera larvae will respond to early plant growth by increasing their abundance within areas that have accelerated snowmelt and warmer conditions. In May of 2011 in a moist acidic tussock tundra system, we accelerated snowmelt by 15 days through the use of radiation-absorbing fabric and warmed air and soil temperatures using open-top chambers, individually and in combination. Every 1-2 days from May 27th to July 8th, 2 minute searches were performed for Lepidoptera larvae in all treatments; when an animal was found, their micro-habitat, surface temperature, behavior, food source, and time of day were noted. The length, body and head width were measured, and the animals were examined for braconid wasp and tachinid fly parasites. Lepidoptera larvae collected in pitfall traps from May 26th to July 7th were also examined and measured. Total density of parasitized larvae accounted for 54% of observed specimens and 50% of pitfall specimens, indicating that Lepidoptera larvae serve an integral role as a host for other pollinators. Total larvae density was highest within the accelerated snowmelt plots compared to the control plots; 66% of observed live specimens and 63% of pitfall specimens were found within the accelerated snowmelt plots. Ninety percent of the total observed animals were found within the open-top warming chambers. Peak density of animals occurred at Solar Noon between 14:00 -15

  16. Simulating the responses of a low-trophic ecosystem in the East China Sea to decadal changes in nutrient load from the Changjiang (Yangtze) River

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Yucheng; Guo, Xinyu; Zhao, Liang

    2017-04-01

    Using a three-dimensional coupled biophysical model, we simulated the responses of a low-trophic ecosystem in the East China Sea (ECS) to long-term changes in nutrient load from the Changjiang (Yangtze) River over the period of 1960-2005. Two major factors affected changes in nutrient load: changes in river discharge and the concentration of nutrients in the river water. Increasing or decreasing Changjiang discharge induced different responses in the concentrations of nutrients, phytoplankton, and detritus in the ECS. Changes in dissolved inorganic nitrogen (DIN), silicate (SIL), phytoplankton, and detritus could be identified over a large area of the ECS shelf, but changes in dissolved inorganic phosphate (DIP) were limited to a small area close to the river mouth. The high DIN:DIP and SIL:DIP ratios in the river water were likely associated with the different responses in DIN, DIP, and SIL. As DIP is a candidate limiting nutrient, perturbations in DIP resulting from changes in the Changjiang discharge are quickly consumed through primary production. It is interesting that an increase in the Changjiang discharge did not always lead to an increase in phytoplankton levels in the ECS. Phytoplankton decreases could be found in some areas close to the river mouth. A likely cause of the reduction in phytoplankton was a change in the hydrodynamic field associated with the river plume, although the present model is not suitable for examining the possibility in detail. Increases in DIN and DIP concentrations in the river water primarily led to increases in DIN, DIP, phytoplankton, and detritus levels in the ECS, whereas decreases in the SIL concentration in river water led to lower SIL concentrations in the ECS, indicating that SIL is not a limiting nutrient for photosynthesis, based on our model results from 1960 to 2005. In both of the above-mentioned cases, the sediment accumulation rate of detritus exhibited a large spatial variation near the river mouth, suggesting

  17. Trophic models: What do we learn about Celtic Sea and Bay of Biscay ecosystems?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moullec, Fabien; Gascuel, Didier; Bentorcha, Karim; Guénette, Sylvie; Robert, Marianne

    2017-08-01

    Trophic models are key tools to go beyond the single-species approaches used in stock assessments to adopt a more holistic view and implement the Ecosystem Approach to Fisheries Management (EAFM). This study aims to: (i) analyse the trophic functioning of the Celtic Sea and the Bay of Biscay, (ii) investigate ecosystem changes over the 1980-2013 period and, (iii) explore the response to management measures at the food web scale. Ecopath models were built for each ecosystem for years 1980 and 2013, and Ecosim models were fitted to time series data of biomass and catches. EcoTroph diagnosis showed that in both ecosystems, fishing pressure focuses on high trophic levels (TLs) and, to a lesser extent, on intermediate TLs. However, the interplay between local environmental conditions, species composition and ecosystem functioning could explain the different responses to fisheries management observed between these two contiguous ecosystems. Indeed, over the study period, the ecosystem's exploitation status has improved in the Bay of Biscay but not in the Celtic Sea. This improvement does not seem to be sufficient to achieve the objectives of an EAFM, as high trophic levels were still overexploited in 2013 and simulations conducted with Ecosim in the Bay of Biscay indicate that at current fishing effort the biomass will not be rebuilt by 2030. The ecosystem's response to a reduction in fishing mortality depends on which trophic levels receive protection. Reducing fishing mortality on pelagic fish, instead of on demersal fish, appears more efficient at maximising catch and total biomass and at conserving both top-predator and intermediate TLs. Such advice-oriented trophic models should be used on a regular basis to monitor the health status of marine food webs and analyse the trade-offs between multiple objectives in an ecosystem-based fisheries management context.

  18. Polychaete response to fresh food supply at organically enriched coastal sites: Repercussion on bioturbation potential and trophic structure

    Science.gov (United States)

    Venturini, N.; Pires-Vanin, A. M. S.; Salhi, M.; Bessonart, M.; Muniz, P.

    2011-12-01

    We investigated the vertical distribution, abundance, specific and functional structure of polychaete assemblages at four organically enriched sites. The effects of fresh organic matter input from the water column driving by upwelling were evaluated. Temperature and salinity values indicate the intrusion of South Atlantic Central Water (SACW) in spring, a nutrient-rich water mass. The dominance of the conveyor belt transport (CONV) in the station influenced by SACW, in the spring survey, is associated with fresh organic matter input as indicated by higher amounts of polyunsaturated fatty acids. Conversely, the predominance of the diffusive mixing (DIFF) bioturbation category, in the sites without SACW influence is related to the preferential accumulation of more refractive food resources as indicated by higher concentrations of short chain saturated fatty acids. At the site influenced by SACW, the changes in polychaete assemblages were not all evident during proceeding upwelling conditions, but may persist at the end of the upwelling. Polychaetes in the study area seemed to be limited by the quality but not the quantity of food. The delay in polychaete response to fresh food supply may be related to the organic enrichment and the prevalence of refractory material in the sediments.

  19. Mechanisms Responsible for the Trophic Effect of Beta-Adrenoceptors on the Ito Current Density in Type 1 Diabetic Rat Cardiomyocytes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Raúl Setién

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Background/Aims: In diabetic ventricular myocytes, transient outward potassium current (Ito amplitude is severely reduced because of the impaired catecholamine release that characterizes diabetic autonomic neuropathy. Sympathetic nervous system exhibits a trophic effect on Ito since incubation of myocytes with noradrenaline restores current amplitude via beta-adrenoceptor (βAR stimulation. Here, we investigate the intracellular signalling pathway though which incubation of diabetic cardiomyocytes with the βAR agonist isoproterenol recovers Ito amplitude to normal values. Methods: Experiments were performed in ventricular myocytes isolated from streptozotocin-diabetic rats. Ito current was recorded by using the patch-clamp technique. Kv4 channel expression was determined by immunofluorescence. Protein-protein interaction was determined by coimmunoprecipitation. Results: Stimulation of βAR activates first a Gαs protein, adenylyl cyclase and Protein Kinase A. PKA-phosphorylated receptor then switches to the Gαi protein. This leads to the activation of the βAR-Kinase-1 and further receptor phosphorylation and arrestin dependent internalization. The internalized receptor-arrestin complex recruits and activates cSrc and the MAPK cascade, where Ras, c-Raf1 and finally ERK1/2 mediate the increase in Kv4.2 and Kv4.3 protein abundance in the plasma membrane. Conclusion: β2AR stimulation activates a Gαs and Gαi protein dependent pathway where the ERK1/2 modulates the Ito current amplitude and the density of the Kv4.2 and Kv4.2 channels in the plasma membrane upon sympathetic stimulation in diabetic heart.

  20. Linking above- and below-ground biodiversity: abundance and trophic complexity in soil as a response to experimental plant communities on abandoned arable land

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Korthals, G.W.; Smilauer, P.; Van Dijk, C.; Van der Putten, W.H.

    2001-01-01

    1. This study investigates the effects of experimental plant communities on different trophic levels in the soil food web of abandoned arable land. 2. In April 1996, a biodiversity experiment commenced using a continuation of agricultural crop rotation (CCR), spontaneous succession with naturally co

  1. [Trophic chains in soil].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goncharov, A A; Tiunov, A V

    2013-01-01

    Trophic links of soil animals are extensively diverse but also flexible. Moreover, feeding activity of large soil saprotrophs often cascades into a range of ecosystem-level consequences via the ecological engineering. Better knowledge on the main sources of energy utilized by soil animals is needed for understanding functional structure of soil animal communities and their participation in the global carbon cycling. Using published and original data, we consider the relative importance of dead organic matter and saprotrophic microorganisms as a basal energy source in the detritus-based food chains, the feeding of endogeic macrofauna on the stabilized soil organic matter, and the role of recent photosynthate in the energy budget of soil communities. Soil food webs are spatially and functionally compartmentalized, though the separation of food chains into bacteria- and fungi-based channels seems to be an over-simplification. The regulation of the litter decomposition rates via top-down trophic interactions across more than one trophic level is only partly supported by experimental data, but mobile litter-dwelling predators play a crucial role in integrating local food webs within and across neighboring ecosystems.

  2. A strategy for reducing numbers? Response.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Banerji, D

    1991-12-01

    The article on human entrapment in India by Maurice King is just another example of the dogmatic, simplistic and reckless way in which the white scholars of the North formulate their ideas. It is these people who are responsible for the opium wars, programs against Jews, and carpet bombing, defoliation, and massacres in Vietnam. King's idea os using UNICEF and the WHO to kill the non white children of the South is just another example of this kind of racist brutality. It is based only upon the written opinions of other white scholars. In 1991 King produced no data about human entrapment in India. King ignores the writing of non whites like Ashish Bose who presided over the International Population Conference in 1989. Other mistakes that King makes include a failure to understand the applications of immunization (EPI) and oral rehydration programs (ORT). The EPI was implemented without ever taking baseline data, so that its effectiveness is impossible to determine with any accuracy. And nowhere in the world has ORT worked as well as UNICEF claimed it would. Further proof that King advocates genocide is his labeling of the insecticide-impregnated bednets as a dangerous technology in increasing entrapment. King fails to acknowledge the overwhelming influence of white consultants on the policies and planning strategies of family planning programs in India. Their list of failures includes: the clinic and extension approach, popularization of the IUD, mass communication, target orientation, sterilization camps, and giving primacy to generalists administrators. They should be held accountable for the 406 million people added to the base population between 1961-91 It should also be noted that India had the ability absorb this large number people while still maintaining a democratic structure, gather a substantial buffer stock of food grains, consistently increasing its per capita income while decreasing its infant mortality and crude death rates, increase its life

  3. Erythropoietin-mediated tissue protection: reducing collateral damage from the primary injury response.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brines, M; Cerami, A

    2008-11-01

    In its classic hormonal role, erythropoietin (EPO) is produced by the kidney and regulates the number of erythrocytes within the circulation to provide adequate tissue oxygenation. EPO also mediates other effects directed towards optimizing oxygen delivery to tissues, e.g. modulating regional blood flow and reducing blood loss by promoting thrombosis within damaged vessels. Over the past 15 years, many unexpected nonhaematopoietic functions of EPO have been identified. In these more recently appreciated nonhormonal roles, locally-produced EPO signals through a different receptor isoform and is a major molecular component of the injury response, in which it counteracts the effects of pro-inflammatory cytokines. Acutely, EPO prevents programmed cell death and reduces the development of secondary, pro-inflammatory cytokine-induced injury. Within a longer time frame, EPO provides trophic support to enable regeneration and healing. As the region immediately surrounding damage is typically relatively deficient in endogenous EPO, administration of recombinant EPO can provide increased tissue protection. However, effective use of EPO as therapy for tissue injury requires higher doses than for haematopoiesis, potentially triggering serious adverse effects. The identification of a tissue-protective receptor isoform has facilitated the engineering of nonhaematopoietic, tissue-protective EPO derivatives, e.g. carbamyl EPO, that avoid these complications. Recently, regions within the EPO molecule mediating tissue protection have been identified and this has enabled the development of potent tissue-protective peptides, including some mimicking EPO's tertiary structure but unrelated in primary sequence.

  4. Historical trophic evolutions and their ecological responses from shallow lakes in the middle and lower reaches of the Yangtze River: Case studies on Longgan Lake and Taibai Lake

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2006-01-01

    The evolutions of diatom floras and the total phosphorous (TP) concentrations in the historical period were reconstructed for two lakes, Longgan and Taibai in the middle Yangtze River,based on high resolutional fossil diatom study from two sediment cores and an established regional diatom-TP transfer function. The TP concentration in Longgan Lake changed slightly in the range of 36-62 μg/L and kept its middle trophic level in the past 200 years. The changes of diatom assemblages reflect a macrophyte-dominated history of the lake. During the nineteenth century, the lake TP concentration increased comparatively, corresponding to the increase in abundance of benthic diatoms. The progressive increase of epiphytic diatoms since the onset of the twentieth century indicates the development of aquatic plants, coinciding with the twice drops of water TP level. The TP concentration in Taibai Lake kept a stable status about 50 μg/L before 1953 AD, while diatoms dominated by facultative planktonic Aulacoseira granulata shifted quickly to epiphytic diatom species, indicating a rapid expansion of aquatic vegetation. During 1953-1970 AD, the coverage of aquatic plants decreased greatly inferred by the low abundance of epiphytic diatoms as well as declined planktonic types, and the reconstructed TP concentration shows an obvious rising trend firstly, suggesting the beginning of the lake eutrophication. The lake was in the eutrophic condition after 1970, coinciding with the successive increase of planktonic diatoms. The comparison of the two lakes suggests the internal adjustment and purification function of aquatic plants for nutrients in water. The discrepancy of TP trends in the two lakes after 1960 reflects two different patterns of lake environmental response to human disturbance. Sediments in Taibai Lake clearly recorded the process of lake ecological transformation from the macrophyte-dominated stage to the algae-dominated stage. The limits of TP concentration (68-118

  5. Trigeminal trophic syndrome

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Parimalam Kumar

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Trigeminal trophic syndrome (TTS is a rare cause of facial ulceration, consequent to damage to the trigeminal nerve or its central sensory connections. We reporta case of TTS in a 48-year-old woman with Bell′s palsy following herpes zoster infection. The patient was treated and counseled. There hasnot been any recurrence for 1 year and the patient is being followed-up. The diagnosis of TTS should be suspected when there is unilateral facial ulceration, especially involving the ala nasi associated with sensory impairment.

  6. Impacts of Intensive Logging on the Trophic Organisation of Ant Communities in a Biodiversity Hotspot

    Science.gov (United States)

    Woodcock, Paul; Edwards, David P.; Newton, Rob J.; Vun Khen, Chey; Bottrell, Simon H.; Hamer, Keith C.

    2013-01-01

    Trophic organisation defines the flow of energy through ecosystems and is a key component of community structure. Widespread and intensifying anthropogenic disturbance threatens to disrupt trophic organisation by altering species composition and relative abundances and by driving shifts in the trophic ecology of species that persist in disturbed ecosystems. We examined how intensive disturbance caused by selective logging affects trophic organisation in the biodiversity hotspot of Sabah, Borneo. Using stable nitrogen isotopes, we quantified the positions in the food web of 159 leaf-litter ant species in unlogged and logged rainforest and tested four predictions: (i) there is a negative relationship between the trophic position of a species in unlogged forest and its change in abundance following logging, (ii) the trophic positions of species are altered by logging, (iii) disturbance alters the frequency distribution of trophic positions within the ant assemblage, and (iv) disturbance reduces food chain length. We found that ant abundance was 30% lower in logged forest than in unlogged forest but changes in abundance of individual species were not related to trophic position, providing no support for prediction (i). However, trophic positions of individual species were significantly higher in logged forest, supporting prediction (ii). Consequently, the frequency distribution of trophic positions differed significantly between unlogged and logged forest, supporting prediction (iii), and food chains were 0.2 trophic levels longer in logged forest, the opposite of prediction (iv). Our results demonstrate that disturbance can alter trophic organisation even without trophically-biased changes in community composition. Nonetheless, the absence of any reduction in food chain length in logged forest suggests that species-rich arthropod food webs do not experience trophic downgrading or a related collapse in trophic organisation despite the disturbance caused by logging

  7. Impacts of intensive logging on the trophic organisation of ant communities in a biodiversity hotspot.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paul Woodcock

    Full Text Available Trophic organisation defines the flow of energy through ecosystems and is a key component of community structure. Widespread and intensifying anthropogenic disturbance threatens to disrupt trophic organisation by altering species composition and relative abundances and by driving shifts in the trophic ecology of species that persist in disturbed ecosystems. We examined how intensive disturbance caused by selective logging affects trophic organisation in the biodiversity hotspot of Sabah, Borneo. Using stable nitrogen isotopes, we quantified the positions in the food web of 159 leaf-litter ant species in unlogged and logged rainforest and tested four predictions: (i there is a negative relationship between the trophic position of a species in unlogged forest and its change in abundance following logging, (ii the trophic positions of species are altered by logging, (iii disturbance alters the frequency distribution of trophic positions within the ant assemblage, and (iv disturbance reduces food chain length. We found that ant abundance was 30% lower in logged forest than in unlogged forest but changes in abundance of individual species were not related to trophic position, providing no support for prediction (i. However, trophic positions of individual species were significantly higher in logged forest, supporting prediction (ii. Consequently, the frequency distribution of trophic positions differed significantly between unlogged and logged forest, supporting prediction (iii, and food chains were 0.2 trophic levels longer in logged forest, the opposite of prediction (iv. Our results demonstrate that disturbance can alter trophic organisation even without trophically-biased changes in community composition. Nonetheless, the absence of any reduction in food chain length in logged forest suggests that species-rich arthropod food webs do not experience trophic downgrading or a related collapse in trophic organisation despite the disturbance caused by

  8. Trophic flexibility and the persistence of understory birds in intensively logged rainforest.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Edwards, David P; Woodcock, Paul; Newton, Rob J; Edwards, Felicity A; Andrews, David J R; Docherty, Teegan D S; Mitchell, Simon L; Ota, Takahiro; Benedick, Suzan; Bottrell, Simon H; Hamer, Keith C

    2013-10-01

    Effects of logging on species composition in tropical rainforests are well known but may fail to reveal key changes in species interactions. We used nitrogen stable-isotope analysis of 73 species of understory birds to quantify trophic responses to repeated intensive logging of rainforest in northern Borneo and to test 4 hypotheses: logging has significant effects on trophic positions and trophic-niche widths of species, and the persistence of species in degraded forest is related to their trophic positions and trophic-niche widths in primary forest. Species fed from higher up the food chain and had narrower trophic-niche widths in degraded forest. Species with narrow trophic-niche widths in primary forest were less likely to persist after logging, a result that indicates a higher vulnerability of dietary specialists to local extinction following habitat disturbance. Persistence of species in degraded forest was not related to a species' trophic position. These results indicate changes in trophic organization that were not apparent from changes in species composition and highlight the importance of focusing on trophic flexibility over the prevailing emphasis on membership of static feeding guilds. Our results thus support the notion that alterations to trophic organization and interactions within tropical forests may be a pervasive and functionally important hidden effect of forest degradation. © 2013 Society for Conservation Biology.

  9. Infectious Agents Trigger Trophic Cascades.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buck, Julia C; Ripple, William J

    2017-09-01

    Most demonstrated trophic cascades originate with predators, but infectious agents can also cause top-down indirect effects in ecosystems. Here we synthesize the literature on trophic cascades initiated by infectious agents including parasitoids, pathogens, parasitic castrators, macroparasites, and trophically transmitted parasites. Like predators, infectious agents can cause density-mediated and trait-mediated indirect effects through their direct consumptive and nonconsumptive effects respectively. Unlike most predators, however, infectious agents are not fully and immediately lethal to their victims, so their consumptive effects can also trigger trait-mediated indirect effects. We find that the frequency of trophic cascades reported for different consumer types scales with consumer lethality. Furthermore, we emphasize the value of uniting predator-prey and parasite-host theory under a general consumer-resource framework. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. Effects of enhanced UV-B radiation on secondary metabolites in forage plants and potential consequences for multiple trophic responses involving mammalian herbivores

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thines, Nicole J.; Bassman, John H.; Shipley, Lisa A.; Slusser, James R.

    2004-10-01

    Herbivores represent the interface between primary production and higher trophic levels. The effects of enhanced UV-B radiation on microbes, invertebrate herbivores, and detritivores has received limited study in both terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems. However, although direct effects (e.g. melanoma, cataracts) on mammals have been documented, indirect effects (e.g., resulting from changes in plant chemistry) of enhanced UV-B on mammalian herbivores have not been evaluated. Although the diet of mammalian herbivores has little effect on nutritional quality for their associated predators, to the extent changes in plant chemistry affect aspects of population dynamics (e.g., growth, fecundity, densities), higher trophic levels can be affected. In this study, different forage species of varying inherent levels of key secondary metabolites are being grown in the field under either ambient or ambient plus supplemental UV-B radiation simulating a 15% stratospheric ozone depletion for Pullman, Washington. At various time intervals, foliage is being sampled and analyzed for changes in secondary metabolites and other attributes. Using controlled feeding trials, changes in plant secondary metabolites are being related to preference and digestibility in specialist and generalist mammalian hindgut herbivores, digestion in ruminants and non-ruminants, and to selected aspects of population dynamics in mammalian herbivores. Results suggest how UV-B-induced changes in plant secondary chemistry affect animal nutrition, and thus animal productivity in a range of mammalian herbivores. Reductions in palatability and digestibility of plant material along with reductions in fecundity and other aspects of population dynamics could have significant economic ramifications for farmers, ranchers and wildlife biologists.

  11. Trophic modeling of the Northern Humboldt Current Ecosystem, Part I: Comparing trophic linkages under La Niña and El Niño conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tam, Jorge; Taylor, Marc H.; Blaskovic, Verónica; Espinoza, Pepe; Michael Ballón, R.; Díaz, Erich; Wosnitza-Mendo, Claudia; Argüelles, Juan; Purca, Sara; Ayón, Patricia; Quipuzcoa, Luis; Gutiérrez, Dimitri; Goya, Elisa; Ochoa, Noemí; Wolff, Matthias

    2008-10-01

    The El Niño of 1997-98 was one of the strongest warming events of the past century; among many other effects, it impacted phytoplankton along the Peruvian coast by changing species composition and reducing biomass. While responses of the main fish resources to this natural perturbation are relatively well known, understanding the ecosystem response as a whole requires an ecotrophic multispecies approach. In this work, we construct trophic models of the Northern Humboldt Current Ecosystem (NHCE) and compare the La Niña (LN) years in 1995-96 with the El Niño (EN) years in 1997-98. The model area extends from 4°S-16°S and to 60 nm from the coast. The model consists of 32 functional groups of organisms and differs from previous trophic models of the Peruvian system through: (i) division of plankton into size classes to account for EN-associated changes and feeding preferences of small pelagic fish, (ii) increased division of demersal groups and separation of life history stages of hake, (iii) inclusion of mesopelagic fish, and (iv) incorporation of the jumbo squid ( Dosidicus gigas), which became abundant following EN. Results show that EN reduced the size and organization of energy flows of the NHCE, but the overall functioning (proportion of energy flows used for respiration, consumption by predators, detritus and export) of the ecosystem was maintained. The reduction of diatom biomass during EN forced omnivorous planktivorous fish to switch to a more zooplankton-dominated diet, raising their trophic level. Consequently, in the EN model the trophic level increased for several predatory groups (mackerel, other large pelagics, sea birds, pinnipeds) and for fishery catch. A high modeled biomass of macrozooplankton was needed to balance the consumption by planktivores, especially during EN condition when observed diatoms biomass diminished dramatically. Despite overall lower planktivorous fish catches, the higher primary production required-to-catch ratio implied a

  12. Aerobic exercise reduces neuronal responses in food reward brain regions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Evero, Nero; Hackett, Laura C; Clark, Robert D; Phelan, Suzanne; Hagobian, Todd A

    2012-05-01

    Acute exercise suppresses ad libitum energy intake, but little is known about the effects of exercise on food reward brain regions. After an overnight fast, 30 (17 men, 13 women), healthy, habitually active (age = 22.2 ± 0.7 yr, body mass index = 23.6 ± 0.4 kg/m(2), Vo(2peak) = 44.2 ± 1.5 ml·kg(-1)·min(-1)) individuals completed 60 min of exercise on a cycle ergometer or 60 min of rest (no-exercise) in a counterbalanced, crossover fashion. After each condition, blood oxygen level-dependent responses to high-energy food, low-energy food, and control visual cues, were measured by functional magnetic resonance imaging. Exercise, compared with no-exercise, significantly (P Exercise alone significantly (P exercise alone significantly (P Exercise reduced neuronal responses in brain regions consistent with reduced pleasure of food, reduced incentive motivation to eat, and reduced anticipation and consumption of food. Reduced neuronal response in these food reward brain regions after exercise is in line with the paradigm that acute exercise suppresses subsequent energy intake.

  13. Critical assessment and ramifications of a purported marine trophic cascade

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grubbs, R. Dean; Carlson, John K; Romine, Jason G.; Curtis, Tobey H; McElroy, W. David; McCandless, Camilla T; Cotton, Charles F; Musick, John A.

    2016-01-01

    When identifying potential trophic cascades, it is important to clearly establish the trophic linkages between predators and prey with respect to temporal abundance, demographics, distribution, and diet. In the northwest Atlantic Ocean, the depletion of large coastal sharks was thought to trigger a trophic cascade whereby predation release resulted in increased cownose ray abundance, which then caused increased predation on and subsequent collapse of commercial bivalve stocks. These claims were used to justify the development of a predator-control fishery for cownose rays, the “Save the Bay, Eat a Ray” fishery, to reduce predation on commercial bivalves. A reexamination of data suggests declines in large coastal sharks did not coincide with purported rapid increases in cownose ray abundance. Likewise, the increase in cownose ray abundance did not coincide with declines in commercial bivalves. The lack of temporal correlations coupled with published diet data suggest the purported trophic cascade is lacking the empirical linkages required of a trophic cascade. Furthermore, the life history parameters of cownose rays suggest they have low reproductive potential and their populations are incapable of rapid increases. Hypothesized trophic cascades should be closely scrutinized as spurious conclusions may negatively influence conservation and management decisions.

  14. Biodiversity at multiple trophic levels is needed for ecosystem multifunctionality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soliveres, Santiago; van der Plas, Fons; Manning, Peter; Prati, Daniel; Gossner, Martin M; Renner, Swen C; Alt, Fabian; Arndt, Hartmut; Baumgartner, Vanessa; Binkenstein, Julia; Birkhofer, Klaus; Blaser, Stefan; Blüthgen, Nico; Boch, Steffen; Böhm, Stefan; Börschig, Carmen; Buscot, Francois; Diekötter, Tim; Heinze, Johannes; Hölzel, Norbert; Jung, Kirsten; Klaus, Valentin H; Kleinebecker, Till; Klemmer, Sandra; Krauss, Jochen; Lange, Markus; Morris, E Kathryn; Müller, Jörg; Oelmann, Yvonne; Overmann, Jörg; Pašalić, Esther; Rillig, Matthias C; Schaefer, H Martin; Schloter, Michael; Schmitt, Barbara; Schöning, Ingo; Schrumpf, Marion; Sikorski, Johannes; Socher, Stephanie A; Solly, Emily F; Sonnemann, Ilja; Sorkau, Elisabeth; Steckel, Juliane; Steffan-Dewenter, Ingolf; Stempfhuber, Barbara; Tschapka, Marco; Türke, Manfred; Venter, Paul C; Weiner, Christiane N; Weisser, Wolfgang W; Werner, Michael; Westphal, Catrin; Wilcke, Wolfgang; Wolters, Volkmar; Wubet, Tesfaye; Wurst, Susanne; Fischer, Markus; Allan, Eric

    2016-08-25

    Many experiments have shown that loss of biodiversity reduces the capacity of ecosystems to provide the multiple services on which humans depend. However, experiments necessarily simplify the complexity of natural ecosystems and will normally control for other important drivers of ecosystem functioning, such as the environment or land use. In addition, existing studies typically focus on the diversity of single trophic groups, neglecting the fact that biodiversity loss occurs across many taxa and that the functional effects of any trophic group may depend on the abundance and diversity of others. Here we report analysis of the relationships between the species richness and abundance of nine trophic groups, including 4,600 above- and below-ground taxa, and 14 ecosystem services and functions and with their simultaneous provision (or multifunctionality) in 150 grasslands. We show that high species richness in multiple trophic groups (multitrophic richness) had stronger positive effects on ecosystem services than richness in any individual trophic group; this includes plant species richness, the most widely used measure of biodiversity. On average, three trophic groups influenced each ecosystem service, with each trophic group influencing at least one service. Multitrophic richness was particularly beneficial for 'regulating' and 'cultural' services, and for multifunctionality, whereas a change in the total abundance of species or biomass in multiple trophic groups (the multitrophic abundance) positively affected supporting services. Multitrophic richness and abundance drove ecosystem functioning as strongly as abiotic conditions and land-use intensity, extending previous experimental results to real-world ecosystems. Primary producers, herbivorous insects and microbial decomposers seem to be particularly important drivers of ecosystem functioning, as shown by the strong and frequent positive associations of their richness or abundance with multiple ecosystem services

  15. Spacecraft redesign to reduce microphonic response of a VCO component

    Science.gov (United States)

    Strain, J. C.; Mittal, S.

    1988-01-01

    Reaction wheel vibration was found to induce out of specification sidebands on the carrier frequencies of some spacecraft components containing mechanical voltage control oscillators (VCOs). Concurrent investigations were performed to redesign the VCOs to reduce their response to the wheel vibration, and to design a reaction wheel isolation system to reduce the vibration input to the affected components. Component level tests indicated that both efforts provided viable solutions. The redesigned VCO will be incorporated into future spacecraft in the series, while affected spacecraft already in production will be retrofitted with the reaction wheel isolation system.

  16. Reduced dielectric response in spatially varying electric fields

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hansen, Jesper Schmidt

    2015-01-01

    In this paper, the dynamical equation for polarization is derived. From this the dielectric response to a spatially varying electric field is analyzed showing a reduced response due to flux of polarization in the material. This flux is modeled as a diffusive process through linear constitutive...... relations between the flux and the gradient of the polarization. Comparison between the theory and molecular dynamics simulations confirms this effect. The effect is significant for small length scale electric field variations and the inclusion of the flux is thus important in nanoscale modeling...

  17. Exposure to violence reduces empathetic responses to other's pain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guo, Xiuyan; Zheng, Li; Wang, Hongyi; Zhu, Lei; Li, Jianqi; Wang, Qianfeng; Dienes, Zoltan; Yang, Zhiliang

    2013-07-01

    Past researches showed that empathy for pain not only triggers a resonance mechanism between other and self, but also is modulated by contextual factors. Using functional magnetic resonance imaging, the present study demonstrated that short-term media violence exposure reduced both pain ratings and also the activation of anterior insula and anterior mid-cingulate cortex to other's pain. Thus, violence exposure modulated empathic responses to other's pain based on a physiological desensitization.

  18. Sub-meninges implantation reduces immune response to neural implants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Markwardt, Neil T; Stokol, Jodi; Rennaker, Robert L

    2013-04-15

    Glial scar formation around neural interfaces inhibits their ability to acquire usable signals from the surrounding neurons. To improve neural recording performance, the inflammatory response and glial scarring must be minimized. Previous work has indicated that meningeally derived cells participate in the immune response, and it is possible that the meninges may grow down around the shank of a neural implant, contributing to the formation of the glial scar. This study examines whether the glial scar can be reduced by placing a neural probe completely below the meninges. Rats were implanted with sets of loose microwire implants placed either completely below the meninges or implanted conventionally with the upper end penetrating the meninges, but not attached to the skull. Histological analysis was performed 4 weeks following surgical implantation to evaluate the glial scar. Our results found that sub-meninges implants showed an average reduction in reactive astrocyte activity of 63% compared to trans-meninges implants. Microglial activity was also reduced for sub-meninges implants. These results suggest that techniques that isolate implants from the meninges offer the potential to reduce the encapsulation response which should improve chronic recording quality and stability.

  19. Reduced graphene oxide film based highly responsive infrared detector

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khan, Mustaque A.; Nanda, Karuna K.; Krupanidhi, Saluru B.

    2017-08-01

    Due to the unique optical properties, graphene can effectively be used for the detection of infrared light. In this regard, reduced graphene oxide (RGO) has drawn considerable attention in scientific society because of simplicity of preparation and tunable properties. Here, we report the synthesis of RGO by solvothermal reduction of graphene oxide (GO) in ethanol and the detection of infrared light (1064 and 1550 nm) with metal—RGO—metal configuration. We have observed that photocurrent, responsivity as well as the external quantum efficiency increase with C/O ratio. The responsivity value in near-infrared region can be as high as 1.34 A · W-1 and the external quantum efficiency is more than 100%. Response times of these devices are in the order of few seconds. Overall, the responsivity of our device is found to be better than many of the already reported values where graphene or reduced graphene oxide is the only active material. The high value of quantum efficiency is due to strong light absorption and the presence of mid-gap states band in RGOs.

  20. Gastric Bypass Reduces Symptoms and Hormonal Responses in Hypoglycemia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abrahamsson, Niclas; Börjesson, Joey Lau; Sundbom, Magnus; Wiklund, Urban; Karlsson, F Anders; Eriksson, Jan W

    2016-09-01

    Gastric bypass (GBP) surgery, one of the most common bariatric procedures, induces weight loss and metabolic effects. The mechanisms are not fully understood, but reduced food intake and effects on gastrointestinal hormones are thought to contribute. We recently observed that GBP patients have lowered glucose levels and frequent asymptomatic hypoglycemic episodes. Here, we subjected patients before and after undergoing GBP surgery to hypoglycemia and examined symptoms and hormonal and autonomic nerve responses. Twelve obese patients without diabetes (8 women, mean age 43.1 years [SD 10.8] and BMI 40.6 kg/m(2) [SD 3.1]) were examined before and 23 weeks (range 19-25) after GBP surgery with hyperinsulinemic-hypoglycemic clamp (stepwise to plasma glucose 2.7 mmol/L). The mean change in Edinburgh Hypoglycemia Score during clamp was attenuated from 10.7 (6.4) before surgery to 5.2 (4.9) after surgery. There were also marked postsurgery reductions in levels of glucagon, cortisol, and catecholamine and the sympathetic nerve responses to hypoglycemia. In addition, growth hormone displayed a delayed response but to a higher peak level. Levels of glucagon-like peptide 1 and gastric inhibitory polypeptide rose during hypoglycemia but rose less postsurgery compared with presurgery. Thus, GBP surgery causes a resetting of glucose homeostasis, which reduces symptoms and neurohormonal responses to hypoglycemia. Further studies should address the underlying mechanisms as well as their impact on the overall metabolic effects of GBP surgery.

  1. Sex-Steroid Hormone Manipulation Reduces Brain Response to Reward

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Macoveanu, Julian; Henningsson, Susanne; Pinborg, Anja

    2016-01-01

    Mood disorders are twice as frequent in women than in men. Risk mechanisms for major depression include adverse responses to acute changes in sex-steroid hormone levels, eg, postpartum in women. Such adverse responses may involve an altered processing of rewards. Here, we examine how women...... regional brain activity related to the magnitude of risk during choice and to monetary reward. The GnRHa intervention caused a net reduction in ovarian sex steroids (estradiol and testosterone) and increased depression symptoms. Compared with placebo, GnRHa reduced amygdala's reactivity to high monetary......'s vulnerability for mood disorders is linked to sex-steroid dynamics by investigating the effects of a pharmacologically induced fluctuation in ovarian sex steroids on the brain response to monetary rewards. In a double-blinded placebo controlled study, healthy women were randomized to receive either placebo...

  2. Reduced calcium responsiveness characterizes contractile dysfunction following coronary microembolization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Skyschally, Andreas; Gres, Petra; van Caster, Patrick; van de Sand, Anita; Boengler, Kerstin; Schulz, Rainer; Heusch, Gerd

    2008-11-01

    We addressed calcium responsiveness in microembolized myocardium at 6 h after coronary microembolization (ME). In anesthetized pigs calcium responsiveness was determined as the increase of a myocardial work index (WI; LV pressure development vs. wall thickening) in response to a graded intracoronary infusion of CaCl(2) at baseline and at 6 h after ME or placebo, respectively. At baseline, CaCl(2 )infusion increased WI in both groups (ME: 296 +/- 22 to 468 +/- 47 mmHg*mm; placebo: 324 +/- 24 to 485 +/- 38 mmHg*mm; mean +/- SEM). At 6 h after ME, WI was decreased by 159 +/- 16 mmHg*mm (P < 0.05 vs. baseline) and remained reduced at any calcium concentration, whereas it was unchanged with placebo. The calcium concentration in coronary blood necessary to achieve the half maximal increase in WI remained unchanged from baseline to 6 h and did not differ between placebo and ME. The ME-induced myocardial dysfunction is not related to an altered calcium sensitivity, but is characterized by a reduced maximal contractile force.

  3. Influence of climate change and trophic coupling across four trophic levels in the Celtic Sea.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Valentina Lauria

    Full Text Available Climate change has had profound effects upon marine ecosystems, impacting across all trophic levels from plankton to apex predators. Determining the impacts of climate change on marine ecosystems requires understanding the direct effects on all trophic levels as well as indirect effects mediated by trophic coupling. The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of climate change on the pelagic food web in the Celtic Sea, a productive shelf region in the Northeast Atlantic. Using long-term data, we examined possible direct and indirect 'bottom-up' climate effects across four trophic levels: phytoplankton, zooplankton, mid-trophic level fish and seabirds. During the period 1986-2007, although there was no temporal trend in the North Atlantic Oscillation index (NAO, the decadal mean Sea Surface Temperature (SST in the Celtic Sea increased by 0.66 ± 0.02 °C. Despite this, there was only a weak signal of climate change in the Celtic Sea food web. Changes in plankton community structure were found, however this was not related to SST or NAO. A negative relationship occurred between herring abundance (0- and 1-group and spring SST (0-group: p = 0.02, slope = -0.305 ± 0.125; 1-group: p = 0.04, slope = -0.410 ± 0.193. Seabird demographics showed complex species-specific responses. There was evidence of direct effects of spring NAO (on black-legged kittiwake population growth rate: p = 0.03, slope = 0.0314 ± 0.014 as well as indirect bottom-up effects of lagged spring SST (on razorbill breeding success: p = 0.01, slope = -0.144 ± 0.05. Negative relationships between breeding success and population growth rate of razorbills and common guillemots may be explained by interactions between mid-trophic level fish. Our findings show that the impacts of climate change on the Celtic Sea ecosystem is not as marked as in nearby regions (e.g. the North Sea, emphasizing the need for more research at regional scales.

  4. Inducible defences and trophic structure

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vos, M.; Verschoor, A.M.; Kooi, B.W.; Wäckers, F.L.; DeAngelis, D.L.; Mooij, W.M.

    2004-01-01

    Resource edibility is a crucial factor in ecological theory on the relative importance of bottom-up and top-down control. Current theory explains trophic structure in terms of the relative abundance and succession of edible and inedible species across gradients of primary productivity. We argue that

  5. Inducible defences and trophic structure.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vos, M.; Verschoor, A.M.; Kooi, B.W.; Wackers, F.L.; DeAngelis, D.L.; Mooij, W.M.

    2004-01-01

    Resource edibility is a crucial factor in ecological theory on the relative importance of bottom-up and top-down control. Current theory explains trophic structure in terms of the relative abundance and succession of edible and inedible species across gradients of primary productivity. We argue that

  6. Multiple vs. single phytoplankton species alter stoichiometry of trophic interaction with zooplankton.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Plum, Christoph; Hüsener, Matthias; Hillebrand, Helmut

    2015-11-01

    Despite the progress made in explaining trophic interactions through the stoichiometric interplay between consumers and resources, it remains unclear how the number of species in a trophic group influences the effects of elemental imbalances in food webs. Therefore, we conducted a laboratory experiment to test the hypothesis that multispecies producer assemblages alter the nutrient dynamics in a pelagic community. Four algal species were reared in mono- and polycultures under a 2 x 2 factorial combination of light and nutrient supply, thereby contrasting the stoichiometry of trophic interactions involving single vs. multiple producer species. After 9 d, these cultures were fed to the calanoid copepod Acartia tonsa, and we monitored biomass, resource use, and C:N:P stoichiometry in both phyto- and zooplankton. According to our expectations, light and N supply resulted in gradients of phytoplankton biomass and nutrient composition (C:N:P). Significant net diversity effects for algal biomass and C:N:P ratios reflected the greater responsiveness of the phytoplankton polyculture to altered resource supply compared to monocultures. These alterations of elemental ratios were common, and were partly triggered by changes in species frequency in the mixtures and partly by diversity-related changes in resource use. Copepod individual biomass increased under high light (HL) and N-reduced (-N) conditions, when food was high in C:N but low in C:P and N:P, whereas copepod growth was obviously P limited, and copepod stoichiometry was not affected by phytoplankton elemental composition. Correspondingly, copepod individual biomass reflected significant net diversity effects: compared to expectations- derived from monocultures, copepod individuals feeding on algal polycultures remained smaller than predicted under HL and N-sufficient (+N) conditions but grew larger than predicted under HL, -N and low light +N conditions. In conclusion, multiple producer species altered the

  7. Kissing reduces allergic skin wheal responses and plasma neurotrophin levels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kimata, Hajime

    2003-11-01

    The effect of kissing on allergen-induced skin wheal responses and plasma neurotrophin levels were studied in 30 normal subjects, 30 patients with allergic rhinitis (AR), and 30 patients with atopic dermatitis (AD). All of the patients with AR or AD are allergic to house dust mite (HDM) and Japanese cedar pollen (JCP). They are all Japanese and they do not kiss habitually. The subject kissed freely during 30 min with their lover or spouse alone in a room with closed doors while listening to soft music. Before and after kissing, skin prick tests were performed using commercial HDM allergen, JCP allergen, as well as histamine and control solution, and wheal responses were measured. Simultaneously, plasma levels of neurotrophin, including nerve growth factor (NGF), brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), neurotrophin-3 (NT-3) and -4 (NT-4) were measured. Kissing significantly reduced wheal responses induced by HDM and JCP, but not by histamine, and decreased plasma levels of NGF, BDNF, NT-3, and NT-4 in patients with AR or AD, while it failed to do so in normal subjects. These finding indicate that kissing have some implication in the study of neuroimmunology in allergic patients.

  8. Phenological sensitivity to climate across taxa and trophic levels

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Thackeray, Stephen J.; Henrys, Peter; Hemming, Deborah

    2016-01-01

    Differences in phenological responses to climate change among species can desynchronise ecological interactions and thereby threaten ecosystem function. To assess these threats, we must quantify the relative impact of climate change on species at different trophic levels. Here, we apply a Climate...

  9. Science for a wilder Anthropocene: Synthesis and future directions for trophic rewilding research.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Svenning, Jens-Christian; Pedersen, Pil B M; Donlan, C Josh; Ejrnæs, Rasmus; Faurby, Søren; Galetti, Mauro; Hansen, Dennis M; Sandel, Brody; Sandom, Christopher J; Terborgh, John W; Vera, Frans W M

    2016-01-26

    Trophic rewilding is an ecological restoration strategy that uses species introductions to restore top-down trophic interactions and associated trophic cascades to promote self-regulating biodiverse ecosystems. Given the importance of large animals in trophic cascades and their widespread losses and resulting trophic downgrading, it often focuses on restoring functional megafaunas. Trophic rewilding is increasingly being implemented for conservation, but remains controversial. Here, we provide a synthesis of its current scientific basis, highlighting trophic cascades as the key conceptual framework, discussing the main lessons learned from ongoing rewilding projects, systematically reviewing the current literature, and highlighting unintentional rewilding and spontaneous wildlife comebacks as underused sources of information. Together, these lines of evidence show that trophic cascades may be restored via species reintroductions and ecological replacements. It is clear, however, that megafauna effects may be affected by poorly understood trophic complexity effects and interactions with landscape settings, human activities, and other factors. Unfortunately, empirical research on trophic rewilding is still rare, fragmented, and geographically biased, with the literature dominated by essays and opinion pieces. We highlight the need for applied programs to include hypothesis testing and science-based monitoring, and outline priorities for future research, notably assessing the role of trophic complexity, interplay with landscape settings, land use, and climate change, as well as developing the global scope for rewilding and tools to optimize benefits and reduce human-wildlife conflicts. Finally, we recommend developing a decision framework for species selection, building on functional and phylogenetic information and with attention to the potential contribution from synthetic biology.

  10. Unintended consequences of management actions in salt pond restoration: cascading effects in trophic interactions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Takekawa, John Y.; Ackerman, Joshua T.; Brand, Arriana; Graham, Tanya R.; Eagles-Smith, Collin A.; Herzog, Mark; Topping, Brent R.; Shellenbarger, Gregory; Kuwabara, James S.; Mruz, Eric; Piotter, Sara L.; Athearn, Nicole D.

    2015-01-01

    Salt evaporation ponds have played an important role as habitat for migratory waterbirds across the world, however, efforts to restore and manage these habitats to maximize their conservation value has proven to be challenging. For example, salinity reduction has been a goal for restoring and managing former salt evaporation ponds to support waterbirds in the South Bay Salt Pond Restoration Project in San Francisco Bay, California, USA. Here, we describe a case study of unexpected consequences of a low-dissolved oxygen (DO) event on trophic interactions in a salt pond system following management actions to reduce salinity concentrations. We document the ramifications of an anoxic event in water quality including salinity, DO, and temperature, and in the response of the biota including prey fish biomass, numerical response by California Gulls (Larus californicus), and chick survival of Forster's Tern (Sterna forsteri). Management actions intended to protect receiving waters resulted in decreased DO concentrations that collapsed to zero for ≥ 4 consecutive days, resulting in an extensive fish kill. DO depletion likely resulted from an algal bloom that arose following transition of the pond system from high to low salinity as respiration and decomposition outpaced photosynthetic production. We measured a ≥ 6-fold increase in biomass of fish dropped on the levee by foraging avian predators compared with weeks prior to and following the low-DO event. California Gulls rapidly responded to the availability of aerobically-stressed and vulnerable fish and increased in abundance by two orders of magnitude. Mark-recapture analysis of 254 Forster's Tern chicks indicated that their survival declined substantially following the increase in gull abundance. Thus, management actions to reduce salinity concentrations resulted in cascading effects in trophic interactions that serves as a cautionary tale illustrating the importance of understanding the interaction of water quality

  11. Unintended consequences of management actions in salt pond restoration: cascading effects in trophic interactions.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    John Y Takekawa

    Full Text Available Salt evaporation ponds have played an important role as habitat for migratory waterbirds across the world, however, efforts to restore and manage these habitats to maximize their conservation value has proven to be challenging. For example, salinity reduction has been a goal for restoring and managing former salt evaporation ponds to support waterbirds in the South Bay Salt Pond Restoration Project in San Francisco Bay, California, USA. Here, we describe a case study of unexpected consequences of a low-dissolved oxygen (DO event on trophic interactions in a salt pond system following management actions to reduce salinity concentrations. We document the ramifications of an anoxic event in water quality including salinity, DO, and temperature, and in the response of the biota including prey fish biomass, numerical response by California Gulls (Larus californicus, and chick survival of Forster's Tern (Sterna forsteri. Management actions intended to protect receiving waters resulted in decreased DO concentrations that collapsed to zero for ≥ 4 consecutive days, resulting in an extensive fish kill. DO depletion likely resulted from an algal bloom that arose following transition of the pond system from high to low salinity as respiration and decomposition outpaced photosynthetic production. We measured a ≥ 6-fold increase in biomass of fish dropped on the levee by foraging avian predators compared with weeks prior to and following the low-DO event. California Gulls rapidly responded to the availability of aerobically-stressed and vulnerable fish and increased in abundance by two orders of magnitude. Mark-recapture analysis of 254 Forster's Tern chicks indicated that their survival declined substantially following the increase in gull abundance. Thus, management actions to reduce salinity concentrations resulted in cascading effects in trophic interactions that serves as a cautionary tale illustrating the importance of understanding the interaction

  12. p-Cymene reduces orofacial nociceptive response in mice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michele F. Santana

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available This study investigated the possible antinociceptive effect of p-cymene in different tests of orofacial nociception. The animals (mice were pretreated (i.p. with p-cymene (25, 50, 100 mg/kg, morphine (5 mg/kg, or vehicle (0.2% Tween 80+saline, and were then subsequently administered, subcutaneously into their upper lip: formalin, capsaicin, and glutamate. The nociceptive behavior response was characterized by the time in s that the mice remained rubbing the orofacial region, for a period of 40 min in the formalin test (first phase, 0-6 min; and second phase, 21-40 min, and for 42 and 15 min in the capsaicin and glutamate tests, respectively. To verify the possible opioid involvement in the antinociceptive effects, naloxone (i.p. was administered into the mice 15 min prior to the pretreatment with p-cymene (100 mg/kg. Finally, whether or not the p-cymene evoked any change in motor performance in the Rota-rod test was evaluated. The results showed that the treatment with p-cymene, at all doses, reduced (p<0.001 the nociceptive behavior in all nociception tests. The antinociceptive effect of p-cymene was antagonized by naloxone (1.5 mg/kg. Additionally, mice treated with p-cymene did not show any change in motor performance. In conclusion, p-cymene attenuated orofacial nociception, suggesting an involvement of the opioid system in this effect. Thus, p-cymene might represent an important biomolecule for management and/or treatment of orofacial pain.

  13. Future Earth: Reducing Loss By Automating Response to Earthquake Shaking

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allen, R. M.

    2014-12-01

    Earthquakes pose a significant threat to society in the U.S. and around the world. The risk is easily forgotten given the infrequent recurrence of major damaging events, yet the likelihood of a major earthquake in California in the next 30 years is greater than 99%. As our societal infrastructure becomes ever more interconnected, the potential impacts of these future events are difficult to predict. Yet, the same inter-connected infrastructure also allows us to rapidly detect earthquakes as they begin, and provide seconds, tens or seconds, or a few minutes warning. A demonstration earthquake early warning system is now operating in California and is being expanded to the west coast (www.ShakeAlert.org). In recent earthquakes in the Los Angeles region, alerts were generated that could have provided warning to the vast majority of Los Angelinos who experienced the shaking. Efforts are underway to build a public system. Smartphone technology will be used not only to issue that alerts, but could also be used to collect data, and improve the warnings. The MyShake project at UC Berkeley is currently testing an app that attempts to turn millions of smartphones into earthquake-detectors. As our development of the technology continues, we can anticipate ever-more automated response to earthquake alerts. Already, the BART system in the San Francisco Bay Area automatically stops trains based on the alerts. In the future, elevators will stop, machinery will pause, hazardous materials will be isolated, and self-driving cars will pull-over to the side of the road. In this presentation we will review the current status of the earthquake early warning system in the US. We will illustrate how smartphones can contribute to the system. Finally, we will review applications of the information to reduce future losses.

  14. Intersexual trophic niche partitioning in an ant-eating spider (Araneae: Zodariidae.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stano Pekár

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Divergence in trophic niche between the sexes may function to reduce competition between the sexes ("intersexual niche partitioning hypothesis", or may be result from differential selection among the sexes on maximizing reproductive output ("sexual selection hypothesis". The latter may lead to higher energy demands in females driven by fecundity selection, while males invest in mate searching. We tested predictions of the two hypotheses underlying intersexual trophic niche partitioning in a natural population of spiders. Zodarion jozefienae spiders specialize on Messor barbarus ants that are polymorphic in body size and hence comprise potential trophic niches for the spider, making this system well-suited to study intersexual trophic niche partitioning. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Comparative analysis of trophic morphology (the chelicerae and body size of males, females and juveniles demonstrated highly female biased SSD (Sexual Size Dimorphism in body size, body weight, and in the size of chelicerae, the latter arising from sex-specific growth patterns in trophic morphology. In the field, female spiders actively selected ant sub-castes that were larger than the average prey size, and larger than ants captured by juveniles and males. Female fecundity was highly positively correlated with female body mass, which reflects foraging success during the adult stage. Females in laboratory experiments preferred the large ant sub-castes and displayed higher capture efficiency. In contrast, males occupied a different trophic niche and showed reduced foraging effort and reduced prey capture and feeding efficiency compared with females and juveniles. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Our data indicate that female-biased dimorphism in trophic morphology and body size correlate with sex-specific reproductive strategies. We propose that intersexual trophic niche partitioning is shaped primarily by fecundity selection in females, and results from sex

  15. Wolves trigger a trophic cascade to berries as alternative food for grizzly bears.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ripple, William J; Beschta, Robert L; Fortin, Jennifer K; Robbins, Charles T

    2015-05-01

    This is a Forum article in response to: Barber-Meyer, S. (2015) Trophic cascades from wolves to grizzly bears or changing abundance of bears and alternate foods? Journal of Animal Ecology, 83, doi: 10.1111/1365-2656.12338. We used multiple data sets and study areas as well as several lines of evidence to investigate potential trophic linkages in Yellowstone National Park. Our results suggest that a trophic cascade from wolves to elk to berry production to berry consumption by grizzly bears may now be underway in the Park.

  16. Evaluation of European diatom trophic indices.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lototskaya, A.A.; Verdonschot, P.F.M.; Coste, M.; Vijver, van de B.

    2011-01-01

    Freshwater diatoms are considered to be reliable indicators of the trophic status of rivers and lakes. In the past 30 years, a number of indicator indices have been developed and used for the assessment of trophic conditions all over Europe. It is however still not clear whether the ecologic signatu

  17. Reducing ambulance response times using discrete event simulation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wei Lam, Sean Shao; Zhang, Zhong Cheng; Oh, Hong Choon; Ng, Yih Ying; Wah, Win; Hock Ong, Marcus Eng

    2014-01-01

    The objectives of this study are to develop a discrete-event simulation (DES) model for the Singapore Emergency Medical Services (EMS), and to demonstrate the utility of this DES model for the evaluation of different policy alternatives to improve ambulance response times. A DES model was developed based on retrospective emergency call data over a continuous 6-month period in Singapore. The main outcome measure is the distribution of response times. The secondary outcome measure is ambulance utilization levels based on unit hour utilization (UHU) ratios. The DES model was used to evaluate different policy options in order to improve the response times, while maintaining reasonable fleet utilization. Three policy alternatives looking at the reallocation of ambulances, the addition of new ambulances, and alternative dispatch policies were evaluated. Modifications of dispatch policy combined with the reallocation of existing ambulances were able to achieve response time performance equivalent to that of adding 10 ambulances. The median (90th percentile) response time was 7.08 minutes (12.69 minutes). Overall, this combined strategy managed to narrow the gap between the ideal and existing response time distribution by 11-13%. Furthermore, the median UHU under this combined strategy was 0.324 with an interquartile range (IQR) of 0.047 versus a median utilization of 0.285 (IQR of 0.051) resulting from the introduction of additional ambulances. Response times were shown to be improved via a more effective reallocation of ambulances and dispatch policy. More importantly, the response time improvements were achieved without a reduction in the utilization levels and additional costs associated with the addition of ambulances. We demonstrated the effective use of DES as a versatile platform to model the dynamic system complexities of Singapore's national EMS systems for the evaluation of operational strategies to improve ambulance response times.

  18. Ecosystem consequences of enhanced solar ultraviolet radiation: secondary plant metabolites as mediators of multiple trophic interactions in terrestrial plant communities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bassman, John H

    2004-05-01

    The potential role of ultraviolet-B (UV-B)-induced secondary plant metabolites as mediators of multiple trophic responses in terrestrial ecosystems is considered through review of the major classes of secondary metabolites, the pathways for their biosynthesis, interactions with primary and secondary consumers and known UV effects on their induction. Gross effects of UV-B radiation on plant growth and survival under realistic spectral balances in the field have been generally lacking, but subtle changes in carbon allocation and partitioning induced by UV-B, in particular production of secondary metabolites, can affect ecosystem-level processes. Secondary metabolites are important in plant-herbivore interactions and may affect pathogens. They act as feeding or oviposition deterrents to generalists and nonadapted specialists, but adapted specialists are stimulated to feed by these same compounds, which they detoxify and often sequester for use against their predators. This provides a route for tritrophic effects of enhanced UV-B radiation whereby herbivory may be increased while predation on the herbivore is simultaneously reduced. It is in this context that secondary metabolites may manifest their most important role. They can be the demonstrable mechanism establishing cause and effect at higher trophic levels because the consequences of their induction can be established at all trophic levels.

  19. Trophic significance of solitary cells of the prymnesiophyte Phaeocystis globosa depends on cell type

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Dutz, Jörg; Koski, Marja

    2006-01-01

    experiments, revealed that neither the production of transparent exopolymer particles and chitinous threads nor toxicity can explain the observed response. The cohesion of the threads into pentagonal stars was observed only in the avoided mesoflagellate and might cause a mechanical hindrance for the ingestion...... of mesoflagellates. Our results suggest that grazing loss and trophic transfer efficiency might be overestimated when solitary cells are treated as a single functional group with regard to their trophic position....

  20. REDUCED ANTIBODY-RESPONSES AFTER IMMUNIZATION IN RAT LUNG TRANSPLANTS

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    WINTER, JB; GROEN, M; PETERSEN, AH; WILDEVUUR, CRH; PROP, J

    1993-01-01

    Pulmonary infections occur so frequently in recipients of lung transplants as well as of combined heart and lung transplants that it has been suggested that the function of the defense system in lung transplants is impaired. Therefore, we investigated in rats whether antibody responses against intra

  1. Acute khat use reduces response conflict in habitual users.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Colzato, Lorenza S; Sellaro, Roberta; Ruiz, Manuel J; Sikora, Katarzyna; Hommel, Bernhard

    2013-01-01

    Khat consumption has become a worldwide phenomenon broadening from Eastern Africa and the south west of the Arabian Peninsula to ethnic communities in the rest of the world. So far, the cognitive effects of khat use are poorly understood and no studies have looked into the relation between acute khat use and cognitive control functions, the way we control our thoughts and goal directed behavior. We studied how acute khat use affects the emergence and the resolution of response conflict, a central cognitive control function. Khat users (n = 11) and khat-free controls (n = 18) were matched in terms of education, sex, alcohol, and cannabis consumption. Groups were tested on response conflict, as measured by the Simon task. In one single session, participants worked through two task blocks: the khat group chewed exclusively khat whereas the khat-free group chewed solely a gum. Results showed that in the second block, which reflects the acute impact of khat, the khat group was better than controls in resolving stimulus-induced response conflict as indexed by a smaller Simon effect. These results suggest that the acute intake of khat may improve participants' ability of handling response conflict.

  2. Conflict: Run! Reduced Stroop interference with avoidance responses

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Schouppe, N.; de Houwer, J.; Ridderinkhof, K.R.; Notebaert, W.

    2012-01-01

    Conflict has been hypothesized to be aversive, triggering avoidance behaviour (Botvinick, 2007). To test this hypothesis, a standard Stroop task was modified such that avoiding was part of the response set. More precisely, participants were asked to move a manikin towards or away from Stroop stimuli

  3. Citral reduces nociceptive and inflammatory response in rodents

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lucindo J. Quintans-Júnior

    2011-06-01

    Full Text Available Citral (CIT, which contains the chiral enantiomers, neral (cis and geranial (trans, is the majority monoterpene from Lippia alba and Cymbopogon citratus. The present study aimed to evaluate CIT for antinociceptive and anti-inflammatory activities in rodents. Antinociceptive and anti-inflammatory effects were studied by measuring nociception through acetic acid and formalin tests, while inflammation was verified by inducing peritonitis and paw edema with carrageenan. All tested doses of CIT had significant protection (p<0.001 against acetic acid (0.8% induced nociceptive behavior and the effects were also similar to morphine while formalin induced nociception was significantly protected (p<0.05 only at higher dose (200 mg/kg of CIT in the first phase of the test. CIT significantly reduce (p<0.001 nociceptive behavior emanating from inflammation in second phase at all the doses.The pretreatment with CIT (100 and 200 mg/kg significantly reduced the paw edema induced by carrageenan. Moreover, systemic treatment with CIT (100 and 200 mg/kg significantly reduced (p<0.001 the leukocyte migration in the carrageenan-induced migration to the peritoneal cavity. Our investigation shows that CIT possess significant central and peripheral antinociceptive effects. It was also verified an anti-inflammatory activity. All together these results suggest that CIT might represent important tool for treatment of painful conditions.

  4. Reduced-Order Models for Acoustic Response Prediction

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-07-01

    oscillate about the buckled position under acoustic loading or snap-through dynamically if the acoustic loading is high enough. The response of curved... Duffing equation with a cubic hardening spring and viscous damping. An approximation to the frequency backbone curve for the Duffing equation is... oscillation , is the nonlinear natural frequency of oscillation , A is the displacement amplitude, and  is the cubic stiffness coefficient. Points on

  5. A trophic model of fringing coral reefs in Nanwan Bay, southern Taiwan suggests overfishing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Pi-Jen; Shao, Kwang-Tsao; Jan, Rong-Quen; Fan, Tung-Yung; Wong, Saou-Lien; Hwang, Jiang-Shiou; Chen, Jen-Ping; Chen, Chung-Chi; Lin, Hsing-Juh

    2009-09-01

    Several coral reefs of Nanwan Bay, Taiwan have recently undergone shifts to macroalgal or sea anemone dominance. Thus, a mass-balance trophic model was constructed to analyze the structure and functioning of the food web. The fringing reef model was comprised of 18 compartments, with the highest trophic level of 3.45 for piscivorous fish. Comparative analyses with other reef models demonstrated that Nanwan Bay was similar to reefs with high fishery catches. While coral biomass was not lower, fish biomass was lower than those of reefs with high catches. Consequently, the sums of consumption and respiratory flows and total system throughput were also decreased. The Nanwan Bay model potentially suggests an overfished status in which the mean trophic level of the catch, matter cycling, and trophic transfer efficiency are extremely reduced.

  6. Taxonomic and trophic-level differences in the climate sensitivity of seasonal events

    Science.gov (United States)

    Høye, T. T.; Thackeray, S.; Henrys, P. A.; Hemming, D.; Bell, J. R.; Botham, M. S.; Burthe, S.; Helaouet, P.; Johns, D.; Jones, I. D.; Leech, D. I.; Mackay, E. B.; Massimino, D.; Atkinson, S.; Bacon, P. J.; Brereton, T. M.; Carvalho, L.; Clutton-Brock, T. H.; Duck, C.; Edwards, M.; Elliott, J. M.; Hall, S.; Harrington, R.; Pearce-Higgins, J. W.; Kruuk, L. E.; Pemberton, J. M.; Sparks, T. H.; Thompson, P. M.; White, I.; Winfield, I. J.; Wanless, S.

    2015-12-01

    Among-species differences in phenological responses to climate change are of sufficient magnitude to desynchronise key ecological interactions, threatening ecosystem function and services. To assess these threats, it is vital to quantify the relative impact of climate change on species at different trophic levels. Here we apply a novel Climate Sensitivity Profile approach to 10,003 terrestrial and aquatic phenological data sets, spatially matched to temperature and precipitation data, quantifying among-species variation in climate sensitivity. The direction, magnitude and timing of climate sensitivity varied markedly among organisms sharing taxonomic affinities or trophic position. Despite this, we detected a systematic difference in the direction and magnitude, but not seasonal timing, of phenological climate sensitivity among trophic levels. Secondary consumers showed consistently lower climate sensitivity than other groups and are projected to lag behind phenological changes at lower trophic levels, potentially making them at higher risk of disconnection with seasonal resources.

  7. Cellulase activity and dissolved organic carbon release from lignocellulose macrophyte-derived in four trophic conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bottino, Flávia; Cunha-Santino, Marcela Bianchessi; Bianchini, Irineu

    2016-01-01

    Considering the importance of lignocellulose macrophyte-derived for the energy flux in aquatic ecosystems and the nutrient concentrations as a function of force which influences the decomposition process, this study aims to relate the enzymatic activity and lignocellulose hydrolysis in different trophic statuses. Water samples and two macrophyte species were collected from the littoral zone of a subtropical Brazilian Reservoir. A lignocellulosic matrix was obtained using aqueous extraction of dried plant material (≈40°C). Incubations for decomposition of the lignocellulosic matrix were prepared using lignocelluloses, inoculums and filtered water simulating different trophic statuses with the same N:P ratio. The particulate organic carbon and dissolved organic carbon (POC and DOC, respectively) were quantified, the cellulase enzymatic activity was measured by releasing reducing sugars and immobilized carbon was analyzed by filtration. During the cellulose degradation indicated by the cellulase activity, the dissolved organic carbon daily rate and enzyme activity increased. It was related to a fast hydrolysable fraction of cellulose that contributed to short-term carbon immobilization (ca. 10 days). After approximately 20 days, the dissolved organic carbon and enzyme activity were inversely correlated suggesting that the respiration of microorganisms was responsible for carbon mineralization. Cellulose was an important resource in low nutrient conditions (oligotrophic). However, the detritus quality played a major role in the lignocelluloses degradation (i.e., enzyme activity) and carbon release.

  8. Cellulase activity and dissolved organic carbon release from lignocellulose macrophyte-derived in four trophic conditions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Flávia Bottino

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Considering the importance of lignocellulose macrophyte-derived for the energy flux in aquatic ecosystems and the nutrient concentrations as a function of force which influences the decomposition process, this study aims to relate the enzymatic activity and lignocellulose hydrolysis in different trophic statuses. Water samples and two macrophyte species were collected from the littoral zone of a subtropical Brazilian Reservoir. A lignocellulosic matrix was obtained using aqueous extraction of dried plant material (≈40 °C. Incubations for decomposition of the lignocellulosic matrix were prepared using lignocelluloses, inoculums and filtered water simulating different trophic statuses with the same N:P ratio. The particulate organic carbon and dissolved organic carbon (POC and DOC, respectively were quantified, the cellulase enzymatic activity was measured by releasing reducing sugars and immobilized carbon was analyzed by filtration. During the cellulose degradation indicated by the cellulase activity, the dissolved organic carbon daily rate and enzyme activity increased. It was related to a fast hydrolysable fraction of cellulose that contributed to short-term carbon immobilization (ca. 10 days. After approximately 20 days, the dissolved organic carbon and enzyme activity were inversely correlated suggesting that the respiration of microorganisms was responsible for carbon mineralization. Cellulose was an important resource in low nutrient conditions (oligotrophic. However, the detritus quality played a major role in the lignocelluloses degradation (i.e., enzyme activity and carbon release.

  9. Crocin reduces the inflammation response in rheumatoid arthritis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Xiang; Jiang, Chao; Zhu, Wenyong

    2017-05-01

    This study is to determine the role and mechanism of crocin in rheumatoid arthritis (RA). Totally 60 Wistar SD rats were randomly divided into control group, RA model group, methotrexate group, crocin high dose, middle dose, and low dose groups. The paw swelling degree, arthritis score, thymus and spleen index, the mRNA and protein levels of iNOS, and the serum content of TNF-α, IL-1β, and IL-6 were evaluated. Crocin treatment significantly alleviated the paw swelling of RA rats. The arthritis score in crocin treatment groups was significantly lower than that in RA model group. Additionally, the thymus index, but not the spleen index, declined remarkably in crocin treatment groups than in RA model group. Besides, crocin administration significantly reduced the iNOS production and the serum content of TNF-α, IL-1β, and IL-6. Crocin may exert potent anti-RA effects through inhibiting cytokine.

  10. A Reduced Order, One Dimensional Model of Joint Response

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    DOHNER,JEFFREY L.

    2000-11-06

    As a joint is loaded, the tangent stiffness of the joint reduces due to slip at interfaces. This stiffness reduction continues until the direction of the applied load is reversed or the total interface slips. Total interface slippage in joints is called macro-slip. For joints not undergoing macro-slip, when load reversal occurs the tangent stiffness immediately rebounds to its maximum value. This occurs due to stiction effects at the interface. Thus, for periodic loads, a softening and rebound hardening cycle is produced which defines a hysteretic, energy absorbing trajectory. For many jointed sub-structures, this hysteretic trajectory can be approximated using simple polynomial representations. This allows for complex joint substructures to be represented using simple non-linear models. In this paper a simple one dimensional model is discussed.

  11. Trophic and individual efficiencies of size-structured communities

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Andersen, Ken Haste; Beyer, Jan; Lundberg, P.

    2009-01-01

    Individual and trophic efficiencies of size-structured communities are derived from mechanistically based principles at the individual level. The derivations are relevant for communities with a size-based trophic structure, i.e. where trophic level is strongly correlated with individual size...... as in many aquatic systems. The derivations are used to link Lindeman's trophic theory and trophic theory based on average individuals with explicit individual-level size spectrum theory. The trophic efficiency based on the transfer of mass between trophic levels through predator-prey interactions...

  12. Educational strategies to reduce risk: a choice of social responsibility

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Federica La Longa

    2012-07-01

    Full Text Available This study develops the critical reflections of the activities for information, training and education that have been conducted by a group of researchers of the Istituto Nazionale di Geofisica e Vulcanologia in recent years. In particular, from an epistemological point of view, our analysis involves: (i science outreach, the link between science and the world; (ii science teaching and its role in the contact between science and schools; and (iii risk education, seen as a process that can develop a culture of risk in relation to the territory in which we live. These issues are critically analyzed on the basis of experience gained since 1995. The educational methodologies tested in ‘peacetime’ (in the absence of seismic events with the EDURISK Project are compared with those experienced during an emergency in Abruzzo, Italy. Today, we increasingly refer to prevention as the primary strategy of defense against risk. However, very often the responsibility of prevention falls on others, such as the government, institutions and/or local authorities. The citizens then perceive themselves as powerless against the inevitability of natural events, and they refer to these ‘rulers’ for the implementation of effective prevention policies. So, as researchers, what are the most effective actions we can take to influence risk reduction and to motivate the choices of the people? Must the effectiveness of our interventions be based on scientific information or on specific training, or must it be reached through the development of values, actions and awareness? Must our interventions be oriented and developed to inform, to train or to educate?

  13. ABCB10 depletion reduces unfolded protein response in mitochondria.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yano, Masato

    2017-04-29

    Mitochondria have many functions, including ATP generation. The electron transport chain (ETC) and the coupled ATP synthase generate ATP by consuming oxygen. Reactive oxygen species (ROS) are also produced by ETC, and ROS damage deoxyribonucleic acids, membrane lipids and proteins. Recent analysis indicate that mitochondrial unfolded protein response (UPR(mt)), which enhances expression of mitochondrial chaperones and proteases to remove damaged proteins, is activated when damaged proteins accumulate in the mitochondria. In Caenorhabditis elegans, HAF-1, a putative ortholog of human ABCB10, plays an essential role in signal transduction from mitochondria to nuclei to enhance UPR(mt). Therefore, it is possible that ABCB10 has a role similar to that of HAF-1. However, it has not been reported whether ABCB10 is a factor in the signal transduction pathway to enhance UPR(mt). In this study, ABCB10 was depleted in HepG2 cells using small interfering RNA (siRNA), and the effect was examined. ABCB10 depletion upregulated ROS and the expression of ROS-detoxifying enzymes (SOD2, GSTA1, and GSTA2), and SESN3, a protein induced by ROS to protect the cell from oxidative stress. In addition, ABCB10 depletion significantly decreased expression of UPR(mt)-related mitochondrial chaperones (HSPD1 and DNAJA3), and a mitochondrial protease (LONP1). However, the putative activity of ABCB10 to export peptides from mitochondria was not lost by ABCB10 depletion. Altogether, these data suggest that ABCB10 is involved in UPR(mt) signaling pathway similar to that of HAF-1, although ABCB10 probably does not participate in peptide export from mitochondria. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  14. Burnout Is Associated with Reduced Parasympathetic Activity and Reduced HPA Axis Responsiveness, Predominantly in Males

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wieke de Vente

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available There is mounting evidence that burnout is a risk factor for cardiovascular disease (CVD. Stress-related dysregulation of the sympathetic and parasympathetic system and the hypothalamic pituitary adrenal (HPA axis may explain the enhanced risk for CVD. To test this hypothesis, 55 patients (34 males and 21 females with burnout on sickness absence and 40 healthy participants (16 males and 24 females were exposed to a psychosocial stressor consisting of mental arithmetic and public speech. Physiological variables (i.e., blood pressure, heart rate, cardiac output, vascular resistance, cortisol, and alpha-amylase were measured. Basal levels, reactivity, and recovery were compared between groups. In male patients, baseline systolic blood pressure was higher, whereas basal alpha-amylase and cortisol reactivity were lower than in healthy males. In female patients, a tendency for lower basal cortisol was found as compared to healthy females. Furthermore, reduced basal heart rate variability and a trend for elevated basal cardiac output were observed in both male and female patients. Burnout is characterised by dysregulation of the sympathetic and parasympathetic system and the HPA axis, which was more pronounced in males than in females. This study further supports burnout as being a risk factor for CVD through dysregulation of the sympathetic and parasympathetic system and the HPA axis.

  15. Complex trophic interactions in kelp forest ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Estes, J. A.; Danner, E.M.; Doak, D.F.; Konar, B.; Springer, A.M.; Steinberg, P.D.; Tinker, M. Tim; Williams, T.M.

    2004-01-01

    The distributions and abundances of species and populations change almost continuously. Understanding the processes responsible is perhaps ecology’s most fundamental challenge. Kelp-forest ecosystems in southwest Alaska have undergone several phase shifts between alga- and herbivore-dominated states in recent decades. Overhunting and recovery of sea otters caused the earlier shifts. Studies focusing on these changes demonstrate the importance of top-down forcing processes, a variety of indirect food-web interactions associated with the otter-urchin-kelp trophic cascade, and the role of food-chain length in the coevolution of defense and resistance in plants and their herbivores. This system unexpectedly shifted back to an herbivore-dominated state during the 1990s, because of a sea-otter population collapse that apparently was driven by increased predation by killer whales. Reasons for this change remain uncertain but seem to be linked to the whole-sale collapse of marine mammals in the North Pacific Ocean and southern Bering Sea. We hypothesize that killer whales sequentially "fished down" pinniped and sea-otter populations after their earlier prey, the great whales, were decimated by commercial whaling. The dynamics of kelp forests in southwest Alaska thus appears to have been influenced by an ecological chain reaction that encompassed numerous species and large scales of space and time.

  16. Short- and long-term (trophic) purinergic signalling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burnstock, Geoffrey

    2016-08-05

    There is long-term (trophic) purinergic signalling involving cell proliferation, differentiation, motility and death in the development and regeneration of most systems of the body, in addition to fast purinergic signalling in neurotransmission, neuromodulation and secretion. It is not always easy to distinguish between short- and long-term signalling. For example, adenosine triphosphate (ATP) can sometimes act as a short-term trigger for long-term trophic events that become evident days or even weeks after the original challenge. Examples of short-term purinergic signalling during sympathetic, parasympathetic and enteric neuromuscular transmission and in synaptic transmission in ganglia and in the central nervous system are described, as well as in neuromodulation and secretion. Long-term trophic signalling is described in the immune/defence system, stratified epithelia in visceral organs and skin, embryological development, bone formation and resorption and in cancer. It is likely that the increase in intracellular Ca(2+) in response to both P2X and P2Y purinoceptor activation participates in many short- and long-term physiological effects.This article is part of the themed issue 'Evolution brings Ca(2+) and ATP together to control life and death'.

  17. Trophic niche shifts driven by phytoplankton in sandy beach ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bergamino, Leandro; Martínez, Ana; Han, Eunah; Lercari, Diego; Defeo, Omar

    2016-10-01

    Stable isotopes (δ13C and δ15N) together with chlorophyll a and densities of surf diatoms were used to analyze changes in trophic niches of species in two sandy beaches of Uruguay with contrasting morphodynamics (i.e. dissipative vs. reflective). Consumers and food sources were collected over four seasons, including sediment organic matter (SOM), suspended particulate organic matter (POM) and the surf zone diatom Asterionellopsis guyunusae. Circular statistics and a Bayesian isotope mixing model were used to quantify food web differences between beaches. Consumers changed their trophic niche between beaches in the same direction of the food web space towards higher reliance on surf diatoms in the dissipative beach. Mixing models indicated that A. guyunusae was the primary nutrition source for suspension feeders in the dissipative beach, explaining their change in dietary niche compared to the reflective beach where the proportional contribution of surf diatoms was low. The high C/N ratios in A. guyunusae indicated its high nutritional value and N content, and may help to explain the high assimilation by suspension feeders at the dissipative beach. Furthermore, density of A. guyunusae was higher in the dissipative than in the reflective beach, and cell density was positively correlated with chlorophyll a only in the dissipative beach. Therefore, surf diatoms are important drivers in the dynamics of sandy beach food webs, determining the trophic niche space and productivity. Our study provides valuable insights on shifting foraging behavior by beach fauna in response to changes in resource availability.

  18. Measuring variability in trophic status in the Lake Waco/Bosque River Watershed.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodriguez, Angela D; Matlock, Marty D

    2008-01-11

    Nutrient management in rivers and streams is difficult due to the spatial and temporal variability of algal growth responses. The objectives of this project were to determine the spatial and seasonal in situ variability of trophic status in the Lake Waco/Bosque River watershed, determine the variability in the lotic ecosystem trophic status index (LETSI) at each site as indicators of the system's nutrient sensitivity, and determine if passive diffusion periphytometers could provide threshold algal responses to nutrient enrichment. We used the passive diffusion periphytometer to measure in-situ nutrient limitation and trophic status at eight sites in five streams in the Lake Waco/Bosque River Watershed in north-central Texas from July 1997 through October 1998. The chlorophyll a production in the periphytometers was used as an indicator of baseline chlorophyll a productivity and of maximum primary productivity (MPP) in response to nutrient enrichment (nitrogen and phosphorus). We evaluated the lotic ecosystem trophic status index (LETSI) using the ratio of baseline primary productivity to MPP, and evaluated the trophic class of each site. The rivers and streams in the Lake Waco/Bosque River Watershed exhibited varying degrees of nutrient enrichment over the 18-month sampling period. The North Bosque River at the headwaters (NB-02) located below the Stephenville, Texas wastewater treatment outfall consistently exhibited the highest degree of water quality impact due to nutrient enrichment. Sites at the outlet of the watershed (NB-04 and NB-05) were the next most enriched sites. Trophic class varied for enriched sites over seasons. Seasonality played a significant role in the trophic class and sensitivity of each site to nutrients. Managing rivers and streams for nutrients will require methods for measuring in situ responses and sensitivities to nutrient enrichment. Nutrient enrichment periphytometers show significant potential for use in nutrient gradient studies.

  19. Evaluating trophic cascades as drivers of regime shifts in different ocean ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pershing, Andrew J.; Mills, Katherine E.; Record, Nicholas R.; Stamieszkin, Karen; Wurtzell, Katharine V.; Byron, Carrie J.; Fitzpatrick, Dominic; Golet, Walter J.; Koob, Elise

    2015-01-01

    In ecosystems that are strongly structured by predation, reducing top predator abundance can alter several lower trophic levels—a process known as a trophic cascade. A persistent trophic cascade also fits the definition of a regime shift. Such ‘trophic cascade regime shifts' have been reported in a few pelagic marine systems—notably the Black Sea, Baltic Sea and eastern Scotian Shelf—raising the question of how common this phenomenon is in the marine environment. We provide a general methodology for distinguishing top-down and bottom-up effects and apply this methodology to time series from these three ecosystems. We found evidence for top-down forcing in the Black Sea due primarily to gelatinous zooplankton. Changes in the Baltic Sea are primarily bottom-up, strongly structured by salinity, but top-down forcing related to changes in cod abundance also shapes the ecosystem. Changes in the eastern Scotian Shelf that were originally attributed to declines in groundfish are better explained by changes in stratification. Our review suggests that trophic cascade regime shifts are rare in open ocean ecosystems and that their likelihood increases as the residence time of water in the system increases. Our work challenges the assumption that negative correlation between consecutive trophic levels implies top-down forcing.

  20. Trophic hierarchies illuminated via amino acid isotopic analysis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shawn A Steffan

    Full Text Available Food web ecologists have long sought to characterize the trophic niches of animals using stable isotopic analysis. However, distilling trophic position from isotopic composition has been difficult, largely because of the variability associated with trophic discrimination factors (inter-trophic isotopic fractionation and routing. We circumvented much of this variability using compound-specific isotopic analysis (CSIA. We examined the (15N signatures of amino acids extracted from organisms reared in pure culture at four discrete trophic levels, across two model communities. We calculated the degree of enrichment at each trophic level and found there was a consistent trophic discrimination factor (~7.6‰. The constancy of the CSIA-derived discrimination factor permitted unprecedented accuracy in the measurement of animal trophic position. Conversely, trophic position estimates generated via bulk-(15N analysis significantly underestimated trophic position, particularly among higher-order consumers. We then examined the trophic hierarchy of a free-roaming arthropod community, revealing the highest trophic position (5.07 and longest food chain ever reported using CSIA. High accuracy in trophic position estimation brings trophic function into sharper focus, providing greater resolution to the analysis of food webs.

  1. Habitat structure, trophic structure and ecosystem function: interactive effects in a bromeliad-insect community.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Srivastava, Diane S

    2006-09-01

    Although previous studies have shown that ecosystem functions are affected by either trophic structure or habitat structure, there has been little consideration of their combined effects. Such interactions may be particularly important in systems where habitat and trophic structure covary. I use the aquatic insects in bromeliads to examine the combined effects of trophic structure and habitat structure on a key ecosystem function: detrital processing. In Costa Rican bromeliads, trophic structure naturally covaries with both habitat complexity and habitat size, precluding any observational analysis of interactions between factors. I therefore designed mesocosms that allowed each factor to be manipulated separately. Increases in mesocosm complexity reduced predator (damselfly larva) efficiency, resulting in high detritivore abundances, indirectly increasing detrital processing rates. However, increased complexity also directly reduced the per capita foraging efficiency of the detritivores. Over short time periods, these trends effectively cancelled each other out in terms of detrital processing. Over longer time periods, more complex patterns emerged. Increases in mesocosm size also reduced both predator efficiency and detritivore efficiency, leading to no net effect on detrital processing. In many systems, ecosystem functions may be impacted by strong interactions between trophic structure and habitat structure, cautioning against examining either effect in isolation.

  2. Piscivores, Trophic Cascades, and Lake Management

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ray W. Drenner

    2002-01-01

    Full Text Available The concept of cascading trophic interactions predicts that an increase in piscivore biomass in lakes will result in decreased planktivorous fish biomass, increased herbivorous zooplankton biomass, and decreased phytoplankton biomass. Though often accepted as a paradigm in the ecological literature and adopted by lake managers as a basis for lake management strategies, the trophic cascading interactions hypothesis has not received the unequivocal support (in the form of rigorous experimental testing that might be expected of a paradigm. Here we review field experiments and surveys, testing the hypothesis that effects of increasing piscivore biomass will cascade down through the food web yielding a decline in phytoplankton biomass. We found 39 studies in the scientific literature examining piscivore effects on phytoplankton biomass. Of the studies, 22 were confounded by supplemental manipulations (e.g., simultaneous reduction of nutrients or removal of planktivores and could not be used to assess piscivore effects. Of the 17 nonconfounded studies, most did not find piscivore effects on phytoplankton biomass and therefore did not support the trophic cascading interactions hypothesis. However, the trophic cascading interactions hypothesis also predicts that lake systems containing piscivores will have lower phytoplankton biomass for any given phosphorus concentration. Based on regression analyses of chlorophyll�total phosphorus relationships in the 17 nonconfounded piscivore studies, this aspect of the trophic cascading interactions hypothesis was supported. The slope of the chlorophyll vs. total phosphorus regression was lower in lakes with planktivores and piscivores compared with lakes containing only planktivores but no piscivores. We hypothesize that this slope can be used as an indicator of “functional piscivory” and that communities with extremes of functional piscivory (zero and very high represent classical 3- and 4-trophic level

  3. Trophic mechanisms for exercise-induced stress resilience: Potential role of interactions between BDNF and galanin

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Philip V Holmes

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available Current concepts of the neurobiology of stress-related disorders such as anxiety and depression emphasize disruptions in neural plasticity and neurotrophins. The potent trophic actions of exercise therefore represent not only an effective means for prevention and treatment of these disorders, they also afford the opportunity to employ exercise paradigms as a basic research tool to uncover the neurobiological mechanisms underlying these disorders. Novel approaches to studying stress-related disorders focus increasingly on trophic factor signaling in corticolimbic circuits that both mediate and regulate cognitive, behavioral, and physiological responses to deleterious stress. Recent evidence demonstrates that the neural plasticity supported by these trophic mechanisms is vital for establishing and maintaining resilience to stress. Therapeutic interventions that promote these mechanisms, be they pharmacological, behavioral, or environmental, may therefore prevent or reverse stress-related mental illness by enhancing resilience. The present paper will provide an overview of trophic mechanisms responsible for the enhancement of resilience by voluntary exercise with an emphasis on BDNF, galanin, and interactions between these two trophic factors.

  4. Evaluating the effects of trophic complexity on a keystone predator by disassembling a partial intraguild predation food web.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davenport, Jon M; Chalcraft, David R

    2012-01-01

    1. Many taxa can be found in food webs that differ in trophic complexity, but it is unclear how trophic complexity affects the performance of particular taxa. In pond food webs, larvae of the salamander Ambystoma opacum occupy the intermediate predator trophic position in a partial intraguild predation (IGP) food web and can function as keystone predators. Larval A. opacum are also found in simpler food webs lacking either top predators or shared prey. 2. We conducted an experiment where a partial IGP food web was simplified, and we measured the growth and survival of larval A. opacum in each set of food webs. Partial IGP food webs that had either a low abundance or high abundance of total prey were also simplified by independently removing top predators and/or shared prey. 3. Removing top predators always increased A. opacum survival, but removal of shared prey had no effect on A. opacum survival, regardless of total prey abundance. 4. Surprisingly, food web simplification had no effect on the growth of A. opacum when present in food webs with a low abundance of prey but had important effects on A. opacum growth in food webs with a high abundance of prey. Simplifying a partial IGP food web with a high abundance of prey reduced A. opacum growth when either top predators or shared prey were removed from the food web and the loss of top predators and shared prey influenced A. opacum growth in a non-additive fashion. 5. The non-additive response in A. opacum growth appears to be the result of supplemental prey availability augmenting the beneficial effects of top predators. Top predators had a beneficial effect on A. opacum populations by reducing the abundance of A. opacum present and thereby reducing the intensity of intraspecific competition. 6. Our study indicates that the effects of food web simplification on the performance of A. opacum are complex and depend on both how a partial IGP food web is simplified and how abundant prey are in the food web. These

  5. Dynamic plasticity: the role of glucocorticoids, brain-derived neurotrophic factor and other trophic factors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gray, J D; Milner, T A; McEwen, B S

    2013-06-03

    Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) is a secreted protein that has been linked to numerous aspects of plasticity in the central nervous system (CNS). Stress-induced remodeling of the hippocampus, prefrontal cortex and amygdala is coincident with changes in the levels of BDNF, which has been shown to act as a trophic factor facilitating the survival of existing and newly born neurons. Initially, hippocampal atrophy after chronic stress was associated with reduced BDNF, leading to the hypothesis that stress-related learning deficits resulted from suppressed hippocampal neurogenesis. However, recent evidence suggests that BDNF also plays a rapid and essential role in regulating synaptic plasticity, providing another mechanism through which BDNF can modulate learning and memory after a stressful event. Numerous reports have shown BDNF levels are highly dynamic in response to stress, and not only vary across brain regions but also fluctuate rapidly, both immediately after a stressor and over the course of a chronic stress paradigm. Yet, BDNF alone is not sufficient to effect many of the changes observed after stress. Glucocorticoids and other molecules have been shown to act in conjunction with BDNF to facilitate both the morphological and molecular changes that occur, particularly changes in spine density and gene expression. This review briefly summarizes the evidence supporting BDNF's role as a trophic factor modulating neuronal survival, and will primarily focus on the interactions between BDNF and other systems within the brain to facilitate synaptic plasticity. This growing body of evidence suggests a more nuanced role for BDNF in stress-related learning and memory, where it acts primarily as a facilitator of plasticity and is dependent upon the coactivation of glucocorticoids and other factors as the determinants of the final cellular response.

  6. Bioaccumulation and biomagnification of mercury in African lakes: The importance of trophic status

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Poste, Amanda E., E-mail: amanda.poste@niva.no [Norwegian Institute for Water Research, Gaustadalléen 21, 0349 Oslo (Norway); Department of Biology, University of Waterloo, 200 University Avenue West, Waterloo, ON N2L 3G1 (Canada); Muir, Derek C.G. [Aquatic Contaminants Research Division, Environment Canada, 867 Lakeshore Drive, Burlington, ON L7R 4A6 (Canada); Guildford, Stephanie J.; Hecky, Robert E. [Department of Biology, University of Waterloo, 200 University Avenue West, Waterloo, ON N2L 3G1 (Canada); Large Lakes Observatory, University of Minnesota Duluth, 2205 East Fifth Street, Duluth, MN 55812 (United States)

    2015-02-15

    Despite the global prevalence of both mercury (Hg) contamination and anthropogenic eutrophication, relatively little is known about the behavior of Hg in eutrophic and hypereutrophic systems or the effects of lake trophic status on Hg uptake and trophodynamics. In the current study we explore Hg trophodynamics at 8 tropical East African study sites ranging from mesotrophic to hypereutrophic, in order to assess the influence of lake trophic status on Hg uptake and biomagnification. Comprehensive water, plankton and fish samples were collected for analysis of total mercury (THg) and stable carbon and nitrogen isotopic ratios. We found evidence that uptake of THg into phytoplankton tended to be lower in higher productivity systems. THg concentrations in fish were generally low, and THg trophic magnification factors (TMFs; representing the average increase in contaminant concentrations from one trophic level to the next) ranged from 1.9 to 5.6. Furthermore TMFs were significantly lower in hypereutrophic lakes than in meso- and eutrophic lakes, and were negatively related to chlorophyll a concentrations both across our study lakes, and across African lakes for which literature data were available. These observations suggest that THg concentrations were strongly influenced by trophic status, with year-round high phytoplankton and fish growth rates reducing the potential for high THg in fish in these productive tropical lakes. - Highlights: • We characterized Hg in water and biota from 8 East African study sites. • Hg concentrations in fish were low and should not pose a risk to human consumers. • Hg uptake and biomagnification rates were negatively related to trophic status. • Growth dilution in phytoplankton and consumer trophic levels led to low fish Hg.

  7. Effects of lower trophic level biomass and water temperature on fish communities: A modelling study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guiet, Jérôme; Aumont, Olivier; Poggiale, Jean-Christophe; Maury, Olivier

    2016-08-01

    Physical and biogeochemical changes of the oceans have complex influences on fish communities. Variations of resource and temperature affect metabolic rates at the individual level, biomass fluxes at the species level, and trophic structure as well as diversity at the community level. We use a Dynamic Energy Budget-, trait-based model of the consumers' community size-spectrum to assess the effects of lower trophic level biomass and water temperature on communities at steady state. First, we look at the stressors separately in idealized simulations, varying one while the second remains constant. A multi-domain response is observed. Linked to the number of trophic levels sustained in the consumers' community, the regimes highlighted present similar properties when lower trophic level biomass is increased or temperature decreased. These trophic-length domains correspond to different efficiencies of the transfer of biomass from small to large individuals. They are characterized by different sensitivities of fish communities to environmental changes. Moreover, differences in the scaling of individuals' metabolism and prey assimilation with temperature lead to a shrinking of fish communities with warming. In a second step, we look at the impact of simultaneous variations of stressors along a mean latitudinal gradient of lower trophic level biomass and temperature. The model explains known observed features of global marine ecosystems such as the fact that larger species compose fish communities when latitude increases. The structure, diversity and metabolic properties of fish communities obtained with the model at different latitudes are interpreted in light of the different trophic-length domains characterized in the idealized experiments. From the equator to the poles, the structure of consumers' communities is predicted to be heterogeneous, with variable sensitivities to environmental changes.

  8. Trophically available metal - A variable feast

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rainbow, Philip S., E-mail: p.rainbow@nhm.ac.uk [Department of Zoology, Natural History Museum, Cromwell Rd, London SW7 5BD (United Kingdom); Luoma, Samuel N. [Department of Zoology, Natural History Museum, Cromwell Rd, London SW7 5BD (United Kingdom); John Muir Institute of the Environment, University of California, Davis, CA 95616 (United States); Wang Wenxiong [College of Marine and Environmental Sciences, State Key Laboratory for Marine Environmental Sciences, Xiamen University, Fujian (China)

    2011-10-15

    Assimilation of trace metals by predators from prey is affected by the physicochemical form of the accumulated metal in the prey, leading to the concept of a Trophically Available Metal (TAM) component in the food item definable in terms of particular subcellular fractions of accumulated metal. As originally defined TAM consists of soluble metal forms and metal associated with cell organelles, the combination of separated fractions which best explained particular results involving a decapod crustacean predator feeding on bivalve mollusc tissues. Unfortunately TAM as originally defined has subsequently frequently been used in the literature as an absolute description of that component of accumulated metal that is trophically available in all prey to all consumers. It is now clear that what is trophically available varies between food items, consumers and metals. TAM as originally defined should be seen as a useful starting hypothesis, not as a statement of fact. - Trophically Available Metal (TAM), the component of accumulated metal in food that is taken up by a feeding animal, varies with food type and consumer.

  9. Taxonomy, ecology and fishery of Lake Victoria haplochromine trophic groups

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Witte, F.; Oijen, van M.J.P

    1990-01-01

    Based on ecological and morphological features, the 300 or more haplochromine cichlid species of Lake Victoria are classified into fifteen (sub)trophic groups. A key to the trophic groups, mainly based on external morphological characters, is presented. Of each trophic group a description is given c

  10. Modeling lake trophic state: a random forest approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Productivity of lentic ecosystems has been well studied and it is widely accepted that as nutrient inputs increase, productivity increases and lakes transition from low trophic state (e.g. oligotrophic) to higher trophic states (e.g. eutrophic). These broad trophic state classi...

  11. Taxonomy, ecology and fishery of Lake Victoria haplochromine trophic groups

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Witte, F.; Oijen, van M.J.P

    1990-01-01

    Based on ecological and morphological features, the 300 or more haplochromine cichlid species of Lake Victoria are classified into fifteen (sub)trophic groups. A key to the trophic groups, mainly based on external morphological characters, is presented. Of each trophic group a description is given c

  12. Looming Threats and Animacy: Reduced Responsiveness in Youth with Disrupted Behavior Disorders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    White, Stuart F; Thornton, Laura C; Leshin, Joseph; Clanton, Roberta; Sinclair, Stephen; Coker-Appiah, Dionne; Meffert, Harma; Hwang, Soonjo; Blair, James R

    2017-08-03

    Theoretical models have implicated amygdala dysfunction in the development of Disruptive Behavior Disorders (DBDs; Conduct Disorder/Oppositional Defiant Disorder). Amygdala dysfunction impacts valence evaluation/response selection and emotion attention in youth with DBDs, particularly in those with elevated callous-unemotional (CU) traits. However, amygdala responsiveness during social cognition and the responsiveness of the acute threat circuitry (amygdala/periaqueductal gray) in youth with DBDs have been less well-examined, particularly with reference to CU traits. 31 youth with DBDs and 27 typically developing youth (IQ, age and gender-matched) completed a threat paradigm during fMRI where animate and inanimate, threatening and neutral stimuli appeared to loom towards or recede from participants. Reduced responsiveness to threat variables, including visual threats and encroaching stimuli, was observed within acute threat circuitry and temporal, lateral frontal and parietal cortices in youth with DBDs. This reduced responsiveness, at least with respect to the looming variable, was modulated by CU traits. Reduced responsiveness to animacy information was also observed within temporal, lateral frontal and parietal cortices, but not within amygdala. Reduced responsiveness to animacy information as a function of CU traits was observed in PCC, though not within the amygdala. Reduced threat responsiveness may contribute to risk taking and impulsivity in youth with DBDs, particularly those with high levels of CU traits. Future work will need to examine the degree to which this reduced response to animacy is independent of amygdala dysfunction in youth with DBDs and what role PCC might play in the dysfunctional social cognition observed in youth with high levels of CU traits.

  13. Trophic Status Controls Mercury Methylation Pathways in Northern Peats

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hines, M. E.; Zhang, L.; Barkay, T.; Krabbenhoft, D. P.; Schaefer, J.; Hu, H.; Sidelinger, W.; Liu, X.; Wang, Y.

    2015-12-01

    Methyl mercury (MeHg) can be produced by a variety of microbes including syntrophs, methanogens, acetogens, and fermenters, besides sulfate (SO42-, SRB) and iron- reducing bacteria. Many freshwater wetlands are deficient in electron acceptors that support the traditional respiratory pathways of methylation, yet they accumulate high levels of MeHg. To investigate methylation in these wetlands and to connect these pathways with vegetation and microbial communities, incubation experiments were conducted using peats from 26 sites in Alaska. The sites were clustered using multiple factor analysis based on pH, temp, CH4 and volatile fatty acids production rates, and surface vegetation composition. Three clusters were generated and corresponded to three trophic levels that were manifested by three pH levels (3.5, 4.5, and 5). Hg methylation activity in laboratory incubations was determined using the short-lived radioisotope 197Hg. In the low pH, Sphagnum-dominated cluster, methylation rates were less than 1% day-1 and likely conducted by primary fermenters. Conversely, the high pH trophic cluster dominated by Carex aquatilis and active syntrophy exhibited Hg methylation rates as high as 12% day-1. In intermediate sites, rich in Sphagnum magellanicum with less Carex, a gradient in syntrophy and Hg methylation paths was observed. Amendments with process-stimulators and inhibitors revealed no evidence of SO42- reduction, but suggested that SRB, metabolizing either syntrophically with methanogens and/or by fermentation, likely methylated Hg. While on going metatranscriptomics studies are required to verify the role of syntrophs, fermenters, and methanogens as methylators, these results revealed that Hg methylation pathways change greatly along trophic gradients with a dominance of respiratory pathways in mineral-rich sites, syntrophy dominance in intermediate sites, and fermentation dominance in nutrient-poor sites.

  14. Variability of Lekanesphaera monodi metabolic rates with habitat trophic status

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vignes, Fabio; Fedele, Marialaura; Pinna, Maurizio; Mancinelli, Giorgio; Basset, Alberto

    2012-05-01

    Regulation of metabolism is a common strategy used by individuals to respond to a changing environment. The mechanisms underlying the variability of metabolic rates in macroinvertebrates are of primary importance in studying benthic-pelagic energy transfer in transitional water ecosystems. Lekanesphaera monodi is an isopod endemic to transitional water ecosystems that can modify its metabolic rate in response to environmental changes. Therefore it is a useful model in studying the influence of environmental factors on metabolism. This study focused on the interpopulation variability of standard metabolic rates (SMR) in L. monodi populations sampled in three transitional water ecosystems differing in their trophic status. The standard metabolic rates of L. monodi individuals across the same range of body size spectra were inferred from oxygen consumption measurements in a flow-through respirometer in the three populations and a body condition index was assessed for each population. Habitat trophic status was evaluated by monthly measurement of the basic physical-chemical parameters of the water column in the ecosystems for one year. Standard metabolic rates showed high variability, ranging from 0.27 to 10.14 J d-1. Body size accounted for more than 38% of total variability. In terms of trophic status, individuals from the eutrophic ecosystem had significantly higher standard metabolic rates than individuals from the other ecosystems (SMR = 2.3 J d-1 in Spunderati Sud vs. 1.36 J d-1 in Alimini and 0.69 J d-1 in Acquatina). The body conditions index was also higher in the population from the eutrophic ecosystem. Results show that standard metabolic rates and growth rates are directly related to habitat productivity in accordance with the expectations of the food habits hypothesis. A possible extension of this hypothesis to benthic invertebrates is proposed.

  15. Intersexual Trophic Niche Partitioning in an Ant-Eating spider (Araneae: Zodariidae)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pekár, Stanislav; Martisová, Martina; Bilde, T.

    2011-01-01

    Background Divergence in trophic niche between the sexes may function to reduce competition between the sexes (“intersexual niche partitioning hypothesis”), or may be result from differential selection among the sexes on maximizing reproductive output (“sexual selection hypothesis”). The latter may...... lead to higher energy demands in females driven by fecundity selection, while males invest in mate searching. We tested predictions of the two hypotheses underlying intersexual trophic niche partitioning in a natural population of spiders. Zodarion jozefienae spiders specialize on Messor barbarus ants...... demonstrated highly female biased SSD (Sexual Size Dimorphism) in body size, body weight, and in the size of chelicerae, the latter arising from sex-specific growth patterns in trophic morphology. In the field, female spiders actively selected ant sub-castes that were larger than the average prey size...

  16. Index for Assessing Water Trophic Status in Semi-Enclosed Cuban Bays. Case Study: Cienfuegos Bay

    CERN Document Server

    Seisdedo, Mabel; Arencibia, Gustavo

    2013-01-01

    This paper aims at contributing to the coastal environmental management by developing a new trophic status index of the water (TSIW). The index is tailored to semi-enclosed bays with estuarine characteristic like the Cienfuegos bay in Cuba. We also propose pressure indicators related to exporting and assimilation capacities as a tool to assess the vulnerability of the system to eutrophication. The TSIW is based on response indicators to eutrophication processes showing correspondence with the predefined pressure indicators and previous reports on water quality. Thus, the proposed trophic status index is a reliable scientific tool to measure the current stage of the water quality and to establish a baseline for further studies.

  17. Reduced Southern Hemispheric circulation response to quadrupled CO2 due to stratospheric ozone feedback

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chiodo, Gabriel; Polvani, Lorenzo M.

    2017-01-01

    Due to computational constraints, interactive stratospheric ozone chemistry is commonly neglected in most climate models participating in intercomparison projects. The impact of this simplification on the modeled response to external forcings remains unexplored. In this work, we examine the importance of including interactive stratospheric ozone chemistry on the Southern Hemispheric circulation response to an abrupt quadrupling of CO2. We find that including interactive ozone significantly reduces (by 20%) the response of the midlatitude jet to CO2, even though it does not alter the surface temperature response. The reduction of the tropospheric circulation response is due to CO2 induced ozone changes and their effects on the meridional temperature gradient near the tropopause. Our findings suggest that neglecting this stratospheric ozone feedback results in an overestimate of the circulation response to increased CO2. This has important implications for climate projections of the Southern Hemispheric circulation response to CO2.

  18. Stem transcriptome reveals mechanisms to reduce the energetic cost of shade-avoidance responses in tomato.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cagnola, Juan Ignacio; Ploschuk, Edmundo; Benech-Arnold, Tomás; Finlayson, Scott A; Casal, Jorge José

    2012-10-01

    While the most conspicuous response to low red/far-red ratios (R:FR) of shade light perceived by phytochrome is the promotion of stem growth, additional, less obvious effects may be discovered by studying changes in the stem transcriptome. Here, we report rapid and reversible stem transcriptome responses to R:FR in tomato (Solanum lycopersicum). As expected, low R:FR promoted the expression of growth-related genes, including those involved in the metabolism of cell wall carbohydrates and in auxin responses. In addition, genes involved in flavonoid synthesis, isoprenoid metabolism, and photosynthesis (dark reactions) were overrepresented in clusters showing reduced expression in the stem of low R:FR-treated plants. Consistent with these responses, low R:FR decreased the levels of flavonoids (anthocyanin, quercetin, kaempferol) and selected isoprenoid derivatives (chlorophyll, carotenoids) in the stem and severely reduced the photosynthetic capacity of this organ. However, lignin contents were unaffected. Low R:FR reduced the stem levels of jasmonate, which is a known inducer of flavonoid synthesis. The rate of stem respiration was also reduced in low R:FR-treated plants, indicating that by downsizing the stem photosynthetic apparatus and the levels of photoprotective pigments under low R:FR, tomato plants reduce the energetic cost of shade-avoidance responses.

  19. Beyond self-serving bias: diffusion of responsibility reduces sense of agency and outcome monitoring.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beyer, Frederike; Sidarus, Nura; Bonicalzi, Sofia; Haggard, Patrick

    2016-11-01

    Diffusion of responsibility across agents has been proposed to underlie decreased helping and increased aggression in group behaviour. However, few studies have directly investigated effects of the presence of other people on how we experience the consequences of our actions. This EEG study investigated whether diffusion of responsibility simply reflects a post-hoc self-serving bias, or rather has direct effects on how we process the outcomes of our actions, and our experience of agency over them. Participants made voluntary actions whose outcomes were more or less negative. Presence of another potential agent reduced participants' sense of agency over those outcomes, even though it was always obvious who caused each outcome. Further, presence of another agent reduced the amplitude of feedback-related negativity evoked by outcome stimuli, suggesting reduced outcome monitoring. The presence of other agents may lead to diffusion of responsibility by weakening the neural linkage between one's actions and their outcomes.

  20. Modelling emergent trophic strategies in plankton

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Andersen, Ken Haste; Aksnes, Dag L.; Berge, Terje;

    2015-01-01

    Plankton are typically divided into phytoplankton and zooplankton in marine ecosystem models. Yet, most protists in the photic zone engage in some degree of phagotrophy, and it has been suggested that trophic strategy is really a continuum between pure phototrophs (phytoplankton) and pure...... phagotrophs (unicellular zooplankton). Such a continuum of trophic strategies is well represented by trait-based modelling techniques. A key model ingredient is the size of individual cells, as size constrains affinities for nutrient uptake, photosynthesis and active encounter with other cells. We outline...... a general trait-based model of a unicellular planktonic organism where size is a central trait and where nutrient uptake, photosynthesis and phagotrophy are determined by investments into these functions and by the physical constraints imposed by organism size. This framework provides simple predictions...

  1. Trigeminal trophic syndrome: A rare entity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sunil N Mishra

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Trigeminal trophic syndrome is a rare condition resulting from self-manipulation of the skin after a peripheral or central injury to the trigeminal system. The syndrome consists of a classic triad of anaesthesia, paraesthesia, and a secondary persistent or recurrent facial ulceration. We describe a 60 year-old woman who developed this syndrome as a sequel to the gasserian ganglion block for trigeminal neuralgia. She had also developed melasma within 1 year. A remarkable benefit was achieved by proper patient education and topical antibiotics which led to the healing of all ulcerations within 4 weeks. In the case reported here, the diagnosis of the trigeminal trophic syndrome was made primarily as a result of the physician′s experience with the syndrome previously.

  2. Microbes are trophic analogs of animals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steffan, Shawn A; Chikaraishi, Yoshito; Currie, Cameron R; Horn, Heidi; Gaines-Day, Hannah R; Pauli, Jonathan N; Zalapa, Juan E; Ohkouchi, Naohiko

    2015-12-01

    In most ecosystems, microbes are the dominant consumers, commandeering much of the heterotrophic biomass circulating through food webs. Characterizing functional diversity within the microbiome, therefore, is critical to understanding ecosystem functioning, particularly in an era of global biodiversity loss. Using isotopic fingerprinting, we investigated the trophic positions of a broad diversity of heterotrophic organisms. Specifically, we examined the naturally occurring stable isotopes of nitrogen ((15)N:(14)N) within amino acids extracted from proteobacteria, actinomycetes, ascomycetes, and basidiomycetes, as well as from vertebrate and invertebrate macrofauna (crustaceans, fish, insects, and mammals). Here, we report that patterns of intertrophic (15)N-discrimination were remarkably similar among bacteria, fungi, and animals, which permitted unambiguous measurement of consumer trophic position, independent of phylogeny or ecosystem type. The observed similarities among bacterial, fungal, and animal consumers suggest that within a trophic hierarchy, microbiota are equivalent to, and can be interdigitated with, macrobiota. To further test the universality of this finding, we examined Neotropical fungus gardens, communities in which bacteria, fungi, and animals are entwined in an ancient, quadripartite symbiosis. We reveal that this symbiosis is a discrete four-level food chain, wherein bacteria function as the apex carnivores, animals and fungi are meso-consumers, and the sole herbivores are fungi. Together, our findings demonstrate that bacteria, fungi, and animals can be integrated within a food chain, effectively uniting the macro- and microbiome in food web ecology and facilitating greater inclusion of the microbiome in studies of functional diversity.

  3. Introgressive hybridization in a trophically polymorphic cichlid.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hulsey, C Darrin; García-de-León, Francisco J

    2013-11-01

    Trophically polymorphic species could represent lineages that are rapidly diverging along an ecological axis or could phenotypically mark the collapse of species through introgressive hybridization. We investigated patterns of introgression between the trophically polymorphic cichlid fish Herichthys minckleyi and its relative H. cyanoguttatus using a combination of population genetics and species tree analyses. We first examined the distribution of mitochondrial haplotypes within the alternative H. minckleyi pharyngeal jaw morphotypes that are endemic to the small desert valley of Cuatro Ciénegas. We recovered two clusters of mitochondrial haplotypes. The first contained a number of slightly differentiated cytochrome b (cytb) haplotypes that showed some phylogeographic signal and were present in both jaw morphotypes. The other haplotype was monomorphic, highly differentiated from the other cluster, present in equal frequencies in the morphotypes, and identical to H. cyanoguttatus haplotypes found outside Cuatro Ciénegas. Then, we investigated whether H. minckleyi individuals with the H. cyanoguttatus cytb were more evolutionarily similar to H. cyanoguttatus or other H. minckleyi using a species tree analysis of 84 nuclear loci. Both H. minckleyi pharyngeal morphotypes, regardless of their cytb haplotype, were quite distinct from H. cyanoguttatus. However, hybridization could be blurring subdivision within H. minckleyi as the alternative jaw morphotypes were not genetically distinct from one another. Accounting for introgression from H. cyanoguttatus will be essential to understand the evolution of the trophically polymorphic cichlid H. minckleyi.

  4. Trophic ecology of invasive Argentine ants in their native and introduced ranges.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tillberg, Chadwick V; Holway, David A; Lebrun, Edward G; Suarez, Andrew V

    2007-12-26

    Although the ecological effects of invasions often become obvious soon after introduced species become established, more gradual effects may take years to manifest and can thus require long-term data for quantification. We analyzed an 8-year record of stable isotope data on Argentine ants (Linepithema humile) from southern California to infer how the trophic position of this widespread invasive species changes over time as native ant species are displaced. We couple this longitudinal analysis with a biregional comparison of stable isotope data (delta(15)N) on ants from Argentina (native range) and California (introduced range) to quantify (i) how the trophic position of L. humile differs between native and introduced populations, and (ii) how relative trophic position as estimated by delta(15)N values of Argentine ants compare with those of other ants at the same site. Both long-term and biregional comparisons indicate that the Argentine ant's relative trophic position is reduced at sites with a longer history of occupation. Over the course of 8 years, the relative trophic position of L. humile remained high at the leading edge of an invasion front but declined, on average, behind the front as native ants disappeared. Relative to native populations, where L. humile is among the most carnivorous of ants, Argentine ants from California occupied lower trophic positions. These results support the hypothesis that Argentine ants shift their diet after establishment as a result of resource depletion and increasing reliance on plant-based resources, especially honeydew-producing Hemiptera. Our results demonstrate the value of long-term and biregional data in uncovering ecological effects of invasions.

  5. Soil microcosm for testing the effects of chemical pollutants on soil fauna communities and trophic structure

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Parmelee, R.W. (Ohio State Univ., Columbus, OH (United States). Dept. of Entomology); Wentsel, R.S.; Phillips, C.T.; Checkai, R.T. (Army CRDEC, Aberdeen Proving Ground, MD (United States)); Simini, M. (Geo-Centers, Inc., Aberdeen Proving Ground, MD (United States))

    1993-08-01

    A microcosm technique is presented that uses community and trophic-level analysis of soil nematodes and microarthropods to determine the effects of chemicals on soil systems. Forest soil was treated with either copper, p-nitrophenol, or trinitrotoluene. Nematodes were sorted into bacterivore, fungivore, herbivore, and omnivore-predator trophic groups, and a hatchling category. Microarthropods were sorted to the acarine suborders Prostigmata, Mesostigmata, and Oribatida; the insectan order Collembola; and a miscellaneous group. Omnivore-predator nematodes and meso-stigmatid and oribatid mites were the groups most sensitive to copper and were significantly reduced at levels as low as 100 [mu]g g[sup [minus]1] copper. Total nematode and microarthropod numbers declined above 200 [mu]g g[sup [minus]1] copper. Trophic structure analysis suggested that high sensitivity of nematode predators to intermediate levels of copper reduced predation on herbivore nematodes and resulted in greater numbers of nematodes compared to controls. p-Nitrophenol was very toxic to the nematode community, and all trophic groups were significantly reduced above 20 [mu]g g[sup [minus]1]. However, there was no effect of p-nitrophenol on microarthropods. Trinitrotoluene had no significant negative effect on total abundance of either groups of soil fauna, but oribatids were significantly reduced at 200 [mu]g g[sup [minus]1]. The results demonstrated that soil nematodes and microarthropods were sensitive indicators of environmental contaminants and that trophic-structure and community analysis has the potential to detect more subtle indirect effects of chemicals on soil food-web structure. The authors conclude that microcosms with field communities of soil microfauna offer high resolution of the ecotoxicological effects of chemicals in complex soil systems.

  6. Sulfide response analysis for sulfide control using a pS electrode in sulfate reducing bioreactors

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Villa Gomez, D.K.; Cassidy, J.; Keesman, K.J.; Sampaio, R.M.; Lens, P.N.L.

    2014-01-01

    Step changes in the organic loading rate (OLR) through variations in the influent chemical oxygen demand (CODin) concentration or in the hydraulic retention time (HRT) at constant COD/SO4 2- ratio (0.67) were applied to create sulfide responses for the design of a sulfide control in sulfate reducing

  7. Sulfide response analysis for sulfide control using a pS electrode in sulfate reducing bioreactors

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Villa Gomez, D.K.; Cassidy, J.; Keesman, K.J.; Sampaio, R.M.; Lens, P.N.L.

    2014-01-01

    Step changes in the organic loading rate (OLR) through variations in the influent chemical oxygen demand (CODin) concentration or in the hydraulic retention time (HRT) at constant COD/SO4 2- ratio (0.67) were applied to create sulfide responses for the design of a sulfide control in sulfate reducing

  8. Mechanism-based modeling of reduced inotropic responsiveness to digoxin in endotoxemic rat hearts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baek, Myoungki; Weiss, Michael

    2005-05-02

    The mechanisms by which endotoxemia affects myocardial contractility and responsiveness to inotropic drugs are not well understood. We examined the positive inotropic effect of digoxin in single-pass Langendorff-perfused hearts from rats after in vivo pretreatment with lipopolysaccharide (LPS, 4 mg/kg, i.p., 4 h before heart isolation). Using a mathematical modeling approach that allows differentiation between effects elicited at the receptor and postreceptor level, we studied uptake, receptor binding and effectuation kinetics after three consecutive digoxin doses (15, 30, and 45 microg) in the absence and presence of the reverse mode Na(+)/Ca(2+) exchange (NCX) inhibitor KB-R7943 (0.1 microM) in perfusate. LPS significantly depressed baseline contractility and the inotropic response to digoxin without affecting its uptake mechanism. Compared with the control group, the slope of the functional receptor occupancy (stimulus)-to-response relationship was reduced by 44% in the LPS group. Model analysis revealed a significant correlation between changes in digoxin action and LPS-induced febrile response: digoxin receptor affinity increased and the response/stimulus ratio decreased with rise in body temperature, respectively. In contrast, the diminished responsiveness to digoxin observed after NCX inhibition in the control group was not further attenuated in the LPS group. These results support the hypothesis that postreceptor events may be responsible for the diminished contractile response to digoxin during endotoxemia.

  9. Giving support to others reduces sympathetic nervous system-related responses to stress.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Inagaki, Tristen K; Eisenberger, Naomi I

    2016-04-01

    Social support is a major contributor to the link between social ties and beneficial health outcomes. Research to date has focused on how receiving support from others might be good for us; however, we know less about the health effects of giving support to others. Based on prior work in animals showing that stimulating neural circuitry important for caregiving behavior can reduce sympathetic-related responses to stressors, it is possible that, in humans, giving to others can reduce stressor-evoked sympathetic nervous system responding, which has implications for health outcomes. To test the effect of giving support on the physiological stress response, participants either wrote a supportive note to a friend (support-giving condition) or wrote about their route to school/work (control condition) before undergoing a standard laboratory-based stress task. Physiological responses (heart rate, blood pressure, salivary alpha-amylase, salivary cortisol), and self-reported stress were collected throughout the protocol. In line with hypotheses, support giving (vs. control) reduced sympathetic-related responses (systolic blood pressure and alpha-amylase) to the stressor. No effects of support giving were found on self-reported psychological stress or cortisol levels. Results add to existing knowledge of the pathways by which support giving may lead to health benefits and highlight the contribution of giving to others in the broader social support-health link.

  10. Oxytocin blurs the self-other distinction during trait judgments and reduces medial prefrontal cortex responses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, Weihua; Yao, Shuxia; Li, Qin; Geng, Yayuan; Ma, Xiaole; Luo, Lizhu; Xu, Lei; Kendrick, Keith M

    2016-07-01

    The neuropeptide oxytocin (OXT) may act either to increase or blur the distinction between self and other and thereby promote either more selfish or altruistic behaviors. To attempt to distinguish between these two possibilities we performed a double-blind, between-subject, placebo-controlled design study to investigate the effect of intranasal OXT on self and other (mother, classmate, or stranger) trait judgments in conjunction with functional magnetic resonance imaging. Results showed that OXT reduced response times for making both self and other judgments, but also reduced the accuracy of their subsequent recall, thereby abolishing the normal self-bias observed in this task. OXT also abolished the positive correlation between response and self-esteem scale scores seen in the PLC group, suggesting that its effects were strongest in individuals with higher levels of self-esteem. A whole-brain functional magnetic resonance imaging analysis revealed that OXT also reduced responses during both self and other trait judgments in the dorsal (dmPFC) and ventral (vmPFC) medial prefrontal cortex. A subsequent region of interest analysis revealed that behavioral performance and self-esteem scale scores were associated with dmPFC activation and its functional connectivity with the anterior cingulate and between the vmPFC and posterior cingulate. Thus overall, while OXT may improve speed of decision making in self -vs. other trait judgments it also blunts the normal bias towards remembering self-attributes and reduces mPFC responses and connectivity with other cortical midline regions involved in self-processing. This is consistent with the view that OXT can reduce self-centered behavior. Hum Brain Mapp 37:2512-2527, 2016. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  11. Statistical assessment of trophic conditions: squared Euclidean distance approach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chatchai Ratanachai

    2003-05-01

    Full Text Available The classification of trophic conditions of water bodies may often face contradictory cases where a given lake is classified into a trophic category from a trophic variable, whereas it is classified into another trophic category from other trophic variables. To solve this problem, this paper proposes a new methodology based on the concepts of squared Euclidean distance and the boundary values recommended by the OECD (Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development. This methodology requires that a trophic variable data set of a water body under consideration and such boundary values be compared by a measure of similarity computed by using basic statistical techniques to determine the trophic condition of a given water body. The methodology has been tested by applying it to two sample data sets: the Pattani Dam Reservoir and the North Adriatic Sea data sets, which were taken from Kietpawpan (2002 and Zurlini (1996, respectively. The squared Euclidean distance analysis were then applied to the above data sets in order to classifytrophic conditions, based on four trophic variables comprising total nitrogen, total phosphorus, chlorophylla, and Secchi depth. Our results show that the squared Euclidean distance analysis is a useful methodology for preliminarily classifying trophic conditions and solving contradictory classifications, which often arise when applying the present OECD methodology alone.

  12. Diet shift of lentic dragonfly larvae in response to reduced terrestrial prey subsidies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kraus, Johanna M.

    2010-01-01

    Inputs of terrestrial plant detritus and nutrients play an important role in aquatic food webs, but the importance of terrestrial prey inputs in determining aquatic predator distribution and abundance has been appreciated only recently. I examined the numerical, biomass, and diet responses of a common predator, dragonfly larvae, to experimental reduction of terrestrial arthropod input into ponds. I distributed paired enclosures (n  =  7), one with a screen between the land and water (reduced subsidy) and one without a screen (ambient subsidy), near the shoreline of 2 small fishless ponds and sampled each month during the growing season in the southern Appalachian Mountains, Virginia (USA). Screens between water and land reduced the number of terrestrial arthropods that fell into screened enclosures relative to the number that fell into unscreened enclosures and open reference plots by 36%. The δ13C isotopic signatures of dragonfly larvae shifted towards those of aquatic prey in reduced-subsidy enclosures, a result suggesting that dragonflies consumed fewer terrestrial prey when fewer were available (ambient subsidy: 30%, reduced subsidy: 19% of diet). Overall abundance and biomass of dragonfly larvae did not change in response to reduced terrestrial arthropod inputs, despite the fact that enclosures permitted immigration/emigration. These results suggest that terrestrial arthropods can provide resources to aquatic predators in lentic systems, but that their effects on abundance and distribution might be subtle and confounded by in situ factors.

  13. Sulfide response analysis for sulfide control using a pS electrode in sulfate reducing bioreactors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Villa-Gomez, D K; Cassidy, J; Keesman, K J; Sampaio, R; Lens, P N L

    2014-03-01

    Step changes in the organic loading rate (OLR) through variations in the influent chemical oxygen demand (CODin) concentration or in the hydraulic retention time (HRT) at constant COD/SO4(2-) ratio (0.67) were applied to create sulfide responses for the design of a sulfide control in sulfate reducing bioreactors. The sulfide was measured using a sulfide ion selective electrode (pS) and the values obtained were used to calculate proportional-integral-derivative (PID) controller parameters. The experiments were performed in an inverse fluidized bed bioreactor with automated operation using the LabVIEW software version 2009(®). A rapid response and high sulfide increment was obtained through a stepwise increase in the CODin concentration, while a stepwise decrease to the HRT exhibited a slower response with smaller sulfide increment. Irrespective of the way the OLR was decreased, the pS response showed a time-varying behavior due to sulfide accumulation (HRT change) or utilization of substrate sources that were not accounted for (CODin change). The pS electrode response, however, showed to be informative for applications in sulfate reducing bioreactors. Nevertheless, the recorded pS values need to be corrected for pH variations and high sulfide concentrations (>200 mg/L). Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. Reduced peripheral and mucosal Tropheryma whipplei-specific Th1 response in patients with Whipple's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moos, Verena; Kunkel, Désirée; Marth, Thomas; Feurle, Gerhard E; LaScola, Bernard; Ignatius, Ralf; Zeitz, Martin; Schneider, Thomas

    2006-08-01

    Whipple's disease is a rare infectious disorder caused by Tropheryma whipplei. Major symptoms are arthropathy, weight loss, and diarrhea, but the CNS and other organs may be affected, too. The incidence of Whipple's disease is very low despite the ubiquitous presence of T. whipplei in the environment. Therefore, it has been suggested that host factors indicated by immune deficiencies are responsible for the development of Whipple's disease. However, T. whipplei-specific T cell responses could not be studied until now, because cultivation of the bacteria was established only recently. Thus, the availability of T. whipplei Twist-Marseille(T) has enabled the first analysis of T. whipplei-specific reactivity of CD4(+) T cells. A robust T. whipplei-specific CD4(+) Th1 reactivity and activation (expression of CD154) was detected in peripheral and duodenal lymphocytes of all healthy (16 young, 27 age-matched, 11 triathletes) and disease controls (17 patients with tuberculosis) tested. However, 32 Whipple's disease patients showed reduced or absent T. whipplei-specific Th1 responses, whereas their capacity to react to other common Ags like tetanus toxoid, tuberculin, actinomycetes, Giardia lamblia, or CMV was not reduced compared with controls. Hence, we conclude that an insufficient T. whipplei-specific Th1 response may be responsible for an impaired immunological clearance of T. whipplei in Whipple's disease patients and may contribute to the fatal natural course of the disease.

  15. Emergency response planning to reduce the impact of contaminated drinking water during natural disasters

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Craig L. Patterson; Jeffrey Q. Adams

    2011-01-01

    Natural disasters can be devastating to local water supplies affecting millions of people.Disaster recovery plans and water industry collaboration during emergencies protect consumers from contaminated drinking water supplies and help facilitate the repair of public water systems.Prior to an event,utilities and municipalities can use “What if”? scenarios to develop emergency operation,response,and recovery plans designed to reduce the severity of damage and destruction.Government agencies including the EPA are planning ahead to provide temporary supplies of potable water and small drinking water treatment technologies to communities as an integral part of emergency response activities that will ensure clean and safe drinking water.

  16. Eco-Evolutionary Trophic Dynamics: Loss of Top Predators Drives Trophic Evolution and Ecology of Prey

    Science.gov (United States)

    Palkovacs, Eric P.; Wasserman, Ben A.; Kinnison, Michael T.

    2011-01-01

    Ecosystems are being altered on a global scale by the extirpation of top predators. The ecological effects of predator removal have been investigated widely; however, predator removal can also change natural selection acting on prey, resulting in contemporary evolution. Here we tested the role of predator removal on the contemporary evolution of trophic traits in prey. We utilized a historical introduction experiment where Trinidadian guppies (Poecilia reticulata) were relocated from a site with predatory fishes to a site lacking predators. To assess the trophic consequences of predator release, we linked individual morphology (cranial, jaw, and body) to foraging performance. Our results show that predator release caused an increase in guppy density and a “sharpening” of guppy trophic traits, which enhanced food consumption rates. Predator release appears to have shifted natural selection away from predator escape ability and towards resource acquisition ability. Related diet and mesocosm studies suggest that this shift enhances the impact of guppies on lower trophic levels in a fashion nuanced by the omnivorous feeding ecology of the species. We conclude that extirpation of top predators may commonly select for enhanced feeding performance in prey, with important cascading consequences for communities and ecosystems. PMID:21526156

  17. Eco-evolutionary trophic dynamics: loss of top predators drives trophic evolution and ecology of prey.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eric P Palkovacs

    Full Text Available Ecosystems are being altered on a global scale by the extirpation of top predators. The ecological effects of predator removal have been investigated widely; however, predator removal can also change natural selection acting on prey, resulting in contemporary evolution. Here we tested the role of predator removal on the contemporary evolution of trophic traits in prey. We utilized a historical introduction experiment where Trinidadian guppies (Poecilia reticulata were relocated from a site with predatory fishes to a site lacking predators. To assess the trophic consequences of predator release, we linked individual morphology (cranial, jaw, and body to foraging performance. Our results show that predator release caused an increase in guppy density and a "sharpening" of guppy trophic traits, which enhanced food consumption rates. Predator release appears to have shifted natural selection away from predator escape ability and towards resource acquisition ability. Related diet and mesocosm studies suggest that this shift enhances the impact of guppies on lower trophic levels in a fashion nuanced by the omnivorous feeding ecology of the species. We conclude that extirpation of top predators may commonly select for enhanced feeding performance in prey, with important cascading consequences for communities and ecosystems.

  18. Exploited species impacts on trophic linkages along reef-seagrass interfaces in the Florida Keys.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Valentine, John F; Heck, Kenneth L; Blackmon, Derrick; Goecker, Margene E; Christian, Juliet; Kroutil, Ryan M; Peterson, Bradley J; Vanderklift, Mathew A; Kirsch, Kevin D; Beck, Mike

    2008-09-01

    The removal of fish biomass by extensive commercial and recreational fishing has been hypothesized to drastically alter the strength of trophic linkages among adjacent habitats. We evaluated the effects of removing predatory fishes on trophic transfers between coral reefs and adjacent seagrass meadows by comparing fish community structure, grazing intensity, and invertebrate predation potential in predator-rich no-take sites and nearby predator-poor fished sites in the Florida Keys (USA). Exploited fishes were more abundant at the no-take sites than at the fished sites. Most of the exploited fishes were either omnivores or invertivores. More piscivores were recorded at no-take sites, but most (approximately 95%) were moderately fished and unexploited species (barracuda and bar jacks, respectively). Impacts of these consumers on lower trophic levels were modest. Herbivorous and smaller prey fish (seagrass grazing diminished with distance from reefs and were not negatively impacted by the elevated densities of exploited fishes at no-take sites. Predation by reef fishes on most tethered invertebrates was high, but exploited species impacts varied with prey type. The results of the study show that, even though abundances of reef-associated fishes have been reduced at fished sites, there is little evidence that this has produced cascading trophic effects or interrupted cross-habitat energy exchanges between coral reefs and seagrasses.

  19. Long-chain omega-3 from low-trophic-level fish provides value to farmed seafood.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bibus, Douglas M

    2015-03-01

    Low-trophic-level fish are a crucial source of long-chain (LC) omega-3 fatty acids for farmed fish and humans. Many farm-raised fish species have a clear need for these nutrients. Farmed fish deposit the LC omega-3s in their flesh and transfer them up the food chain. However, the content of LC omega-3s in farm-raised seafood continues to decline, while the content of shorter-chain plant-sourced omega-3s, and pro-inflammtory omega-6s continue to increase. This reduces its nutritional worth. The value of low-trophic-level fish is often viewed merely as its price at the dock. Some reports and metrics steer public attention towards the mass balance between quantities of low-trophic-level fish and farmed seafood. However, the the nutritional value of seafood is more important than its mere quantities. The role of low-trophic-level fish in human nutrition, health, and wellbeing is a fundamental component of its economic value to society.

  20. Estuarine trophic state assessment: New plankton index based on morphology of Keratella rotifers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gopko, Mikhail; Telesh, Irena V.

    2013-09-01

    A new estuarine trophic state index - Keratella-index (KIN), based on the relative abundance of two common rotifer species, Keratella cochlearis and Keratella tecta, was developed and tested for the Neva Estuary (Gulf of Finland, Baltic Sea). The morphological trait variation of these plankton species and their responses to different trophic conditions were investigated at three nearshore stations. The morphological data confirm that K. cochlearis and K. tecta are likely to be two distinct species (not two morphs) at our study site. The mean lorica length of K. cochlearis and K. tecta differ significantly and there were no K. cochlearis individuals with extremely short spines (spine length significantly decreases with an increase in trophic state (R2 = 0.71; p spined K. cochlearis may be explained by the "rare-enemy effect". There was a significant correlation (R2 = 0.76; p < 0.001; R2 = 0.68; p < 0.01) between KIN and the common trophic state indices (TSI and QB/T, respectively). The KIN values indicated meso-eutrophic to strongly eutrophic conditions at different nearshore sampling sites and hence indicated that the Neva Estuary is eutrophic.

  1. "Does replication groups scoring reduce false positive rate in SNP interaction discovery?: Response"

    OpenAIRE

    González-Pérez Antonio; Gayán Javier; Ruiz Agustín

    2010-01-01

    Abstract A response to Toplak et al: Does replication groups scoring reduce false positive rate in SNP interaction discovery? BMC Genomics 2010, 11:58. Background The genomewide evaluation of genetic epistasis is a computationally demanding task, and a current challenge in Genetics. HFCC (Hypothesis-Free Clinical Cloning) is one of the methods that have been suggested for genomewide epistasis analysis. In order to perform an exhaustive search of epistasis, HFCC has implemented several tools ...

  2. Positive thinking reduces heart rate and fear responses to speech-phobic imagery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hu, S; Bostow, T R; Lipman, D A; Bell, S K; Klein, S

    1992-12-01

    30 speech-anxious subjects imagined a phobic speech scene 10 times. The experimental conditions varied according to whether the subjects engaged in positive, neutral, or negative thinking prior to each scene presentation. Heart rate and self-reports of fear were measured during the imagery periods. Positive thinking just before visualization of the phobic images reduced both subjective anxiety about speech and cardiovascular responses.

  3. Reduced Caudate and Nucleus Accumbens Response to Rewards in Unmedicated Subjects with Major Depressive Disorder

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pizzagalli, Diego A.; Holmes, Avram J.; Dillon, Daniel G.; Goetz, Elena L.; Birk, Jeffrey L.; Bogdan, Ryan; Dougherty, Darin D.; Iosifescu, Dan V.; Rauch, Scott L.; Fava, Maurizio

    2009-01-01

    Objective Major depressive disorder (MDD) is characterized by impaired reward processing, possibly due to dysfunction in the basal ganglia. However, few neuroimaging studies of depression have distinguished between anticipatory and consummatory phases of reward processing. Using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) and a task that dissociates anticipatory and consummatory phases of reward processing, the authors tested the hypothesis that MDD participants would show reduced reward-related responses in basal ganglia structures. Method A monetary incentive delay task was presented to 30 unmedicated MDD subjects and 31 healthy comparison subjects during fMRI scanning. Whole-brain analyses focused on neural responses to reward-predicting cues and rewarding outcomes (i.e., monetary gains). Secondary analyses focused on the relationship between anhedonic symptoms and basal ganglia volumes. Results Relative to comparison subjects, MDD participants showed significantly weaker responses to gains in the left nucleus accumbens and bilateral caudate. Group differences in these regions were specific to rewarding outcomes and did not generalize to neutral or negative outcomes, although relatively reduced responses to monetary penalties in MDD emerged in other caudate regions. By contrast, evidence for group differences during reward anticipation was weaker, although MDD subjects showed reduced activation to reward cues in a small sector of the left posterior putamen. Among MDD subjects, anhedonic symptoms and depression severity were associated with reduced bilateral caudate volume. Conclusions These results indicate that basal ganglia dysfunction in MDD may affect the consummatory phase of reward processing. Additionally, morphometric results suggest that anhedonia in MDD is related to caudate volume. PMID:19411368

  4. Giving support to others reduces sympathetic nervous system-related responses to stress

    OpenAIRE

    Inagaki, TK; Eisenberger, NI

    2015-01-01

    © 2015 Society for Psychophysiological Research. Social support is a major contributor to the link between social ties and beneficial health outcomes. Research to date has focused on how receiving support from others might be good for us; however, we know less about the health effects of giving support to others. Based on prior work in animals showing that stimulating neural circuitry important for caregiving behavior can reduce sympathetic-related responses to stressors, it is possible that,...

  5. Reduced compensatory responses to maintain central blood volume during hypovolemic stress in women with vasovagal syncope.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Skoog, Johan; Zachrisson, Helene; Länne, Toste; Lindenberger, Marcus

    2017-01-01

    Although vasovagal syncope (VVS) is a common clinical condition, the underlying pathophysiology is not fully understood. A decrease in cardiac output has recently been suggested as a factor in orthostatic VVS. The aim was to investigate compensatory mechanisms to maintain central blood volume and venous return during hypovolemic stress in women with VVS. Fourteen VVS women (25.7 ± 5.0 yr) and 15 matched controls (22.8 ± 3.2 yr) were investigated. Single-step and graded lower body negative pressure (LBNP) to presyncope were used to create hypovolemic stress. Peripheral mobilization of venous blood from the arm (capacitance response and net capillary fluid absorption) and lower limb blood pooling (calf capacitance response) were evaluated using a volumetric technique. Cardiovascular responses and plasma norepinephrine (P-NE) were measured. Resting P-NE was elevated in VVS women (P < 0.01). Despite a similar hypovolemic stimulus, the increase in P-NE was blunted (P < 0.01) and the maximal percent increase in total peripheral resistance was reduced (P < 0.05) during graded LBNP in VVS women. The arm capacitance response was slower (P < 0.05) and reduced in VVS women at higher levels of LBNP (P < 0.05). Capillary fluid absorption from extra- to intravascular space was reduced by ∼40% in VVS women (P < 0.05). Accordingly, the reduction in cardiac output was more pronounced (P < 0.05). In conclusion, in VVS women, mobilization of peripheral venous blood and net fluid absorption from tissue to blood during hypovolemic stress were decreased partly as a result of an attenuated vasoconstrictor response. This may seriously impede maintenance of cardiac output during hypovolemic stress and could contribute to the pathogenesis of VVS.

  6. Equine colostral carbohydrates reduce lipopolysaccharide-induced inflammatory responses in equine peripheral blood mononuclear cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vendrig, J C; Coffeng, L E; Fink-Gremmels, J

    2012-12-01

    Increasing evidence suggests that reactions to lipopolysaccharide (LPS), particularly in the gut, can be partly or completely mitigated by colostrum- and milk-derived oligosaccharides. Confirmation of this hypothesis could lead to the development of new therapeutic concepts. To demonstrate the influence of equine colostral carbohydrates on the inflammatory response in an in vitro model with equine peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs). Carbohydrates were extracted from mare colostrum, and then evaluated for their influence on LPS-induced inflammatory responses in PBMCs isolated from the same mares, mRNA expression of tumour necrosis factor-alpha, interleukin-6 and interleukin-10 was measured as well as the protein levels of tumour necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-alpha) and interleukin-10 (IL-10). Equine colostral carbohydrates significantly reduced LPS-induced TNF-alpha protein at both times measured and significantly reduced LPS-induced TNF-alpha, IL-6 and IL-10 mRNA expression by PBMCs. Moreover, cell viability significantly increased in the presence of high concentrations of colostral carbohydrates. Carbohydrates derived from equine colostrum reduce LPS-induced inflammatory responses of equine PBMCs. Colostrum and milk-derived carbohydrates are promising candidates for new concepts in preventive and regenerative medicine.

  7. Response of the AMOC to reduced solar radiation - the modulating role of atmospheric chemistry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muthers, Stefan; Raible, Christoph C.; Rozanov, Eugene; Stocker, Thomas F.

    2016-11-01

    The influence of reduced solar forcing (grand solar minimum or geoengineering scenarios like solar radiation management) on the Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation (AMOC) is assessed in an ensemble of atmosphere-ocean-chemistry-climate model simulations. Ensemble sensitivity simulations are performed with and without interactive chemistry. In both experiments the AMOC is intensified in the course of the solar radiation reduction, which is attributed to the thermal effect of the solar forcing: reduced sea surface temperatures and enhanced sea ice formation increase the density of the upper ocean in the North Atlantic and intensify the deepwater formation. Furthermore, a second, dynamical effect on the AMOC is identified driven by the stratospheric cooling in response to the reduced solar forcing. The cooling is strongest in the tropics and leads to a weakening of the northern polar vortex. By stratosphere-troposphere interactions, the stratospheric circulation anomalies induce a negative phase of the Arctic Oscillation in the troposphere which is found to weaken the AMOC through wind stress and heat flux anomalies in the North Atlantic. The dynamic mechanism is present in both ensemble experiments. In the experiment with interactive chemistry, however, it is strongly amplified by stratospheric ozone changes. In the coupled system, both effects counteract and weaken the response of the AMOC to the solar forcing reduction. Neglecting chemistry-climate interactions in model simulations may therefore lead to an overestimation of the AMOC response to solar forcing.

  8. Reducing the Meta-Emotional Problem Decreases Physiological Fear Response during Exposure in Phobics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Couyoumdjian, Alessandro; Ottaviani, Cristina; Petrocchi, Nicola; Trincas, Roberta; Tenore, Katia; Buonanno, Carlo; Mancini, Francesco

    2016-01-01

    Anxiety disorders may not only be characterized by specific symptomatology (e.g., tachycardia) in response to the fearful stimulus (primary problem or first-level emotion) but also by the tendency to negatively evaluate oneself for having those symptoms (secondary problem or negative meta-emotion). An exploratory study was conducted driven by the hypothesis that reducing the secondary or meta-emotional problem would also diminish the fear response to the phobic stimulus. Thirty-three phobic participants were exposed to the phobic target before and after undergoing a psychotherapeutic intervention addressed to reduce the meta-emotional problem or a control condition. The electrocardiogram was continuously recorded to derive heart rate (HR) and heart rate variability (HRV) and affect ratings were obtained. Addressing the meta-emotional problem had the effect of reducing the physiological but not the subjective symptoms of anxiety after phobic exposure. Preliminary findings support the role of the meta-emotional problem in the maintenance of response to the fearful stimulus (primary problem). PMID:27504102

  9. Reducing the meta-emotional problem decreases physiological fear response during exposure in phobics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alessandro Couyoumdjian

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Anxiety disorders may not only be characterized by specific symptomatology (e.g., tachycardia in response to the fearful stimulus (primary problem or first-level emotion but also by the tendency to negatively evaluate oneself for having those symptoms (secondary problem or negative meta-emotion. An exploratory study was conducted driven by the hypothesis that reducing the secondary or meta-emotional problem would also diminish the fear response to the phobic stimulus. Thirty-three phobic participants were exposed to the phobic target before and after undergoing a psychotherapeutic intervention addressed to reduce the meta-emotional problem or a control condition. The electrocardiogram was continuously recorded to derive heart rate (HR and variability (HRV measures and affect ratings were obtained. Addressing the meta-emotional problem had the effect of reducing the physiological but not the subjective symptoms of anxiety after phobic exposure. Present preliminary findings support the role of the meta-emotional problem in the maintenance of the response to the fearful stimulus (primary problem.

  10. Hot or not: Response inhibition reduces the hedonic value and motivational incentive of sexual stimuli

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anne E. Ferrey

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available The motivational incentive of reward-related stimuli can become so salient that it drives behavior at the cost of other needs. Here we show that response inhibition applied during a Go/No-go task not only impacts hedonic evaluations but also reduces the behavioral incentive of motivationally-relevant stimuli. We first examined the impact of response inhibition on the hedonic value of sex stimuli associated with strong behavioral-approach responses (Experiment 1. Sexually-appealing and non-appealing images were both rated as less attractive when previously encountered as No-go (inhibited than as Go (non-inhibited items. We then discovered that inhibition reduces the motivational incentive of sexual appealing stimuli (Experiment 2. Prior Go/No-go status affected the number of key-presses by heterosexual males to view erotic-female (sexually-appealing but not erotic-male or scrambled-control (non-appealing images. These findings may provide an important foundation for developing inhibition-based interventions to reduce the hedonic value and motivational incentive of stimuli associated with disorders of self-control.

  11. Male spiders reduce pre- and postmating sexual investment in response to sperm competition risk

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Tuni, Cristina; Weber, Sabrina; Bilde, Trine

    2017-01-01

    food donations (i.e., nuptial gifts), pre- and postmating responses may be aligned, as nuptial gifts have the dual function of facilitating both mate acquisition and sperm transfer. In the spider Pisaura mirabilis, nuptial gifts consist of silk-wrapped prey. We tested whether males respond...... to a competitor by altering: 1) premating investment in the gift, 2) postmating sperm investment, and 3) whether pre- and postmating responses are coupled and respond to competition in the same direction or not. Under competition risk males silk-wrapped their gifts for significantly shorter time and transferred...... less sperm to females, pointing to a reduction of both pre- and postmating responses. Because silk is not a target of female choice, reducing gift construction may speed up mate acquisition. In accordance with models of sperm allocation, perceived high levels of competition and/or sperm priority...

  12. Multitaxon activity profiling reveals differential microbial response to reduced seawater pH and oil pollution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coelho, Francisco J R C; Cleary, Daniel F R; Costa, Rodrigo; Ferreira, Marina; Polónia, Ana R M; Silva, Artur M S; Simões, Mário M Q; Oliveira, Vanessa; Gomes, Newton C M

    2016-09-01

    There is growing concern that predicted changes to global ocean chemistry will interact with anthropogenic pollution to significantly alter marine microbial composition and function. However, knowledge of the compounding effects of climate change stressors and anthropogenic pollution is limited. Here, we used 16S and 18S rRNA (cDNA)-based activity profiling to investigate the differential responses of selected microbial taxa to ocean acidification and oil hydrocarbon contamination under controlled laboratory conditions. Our results revealed that a lower relative abundance of sulphate-reducing bacteria (Desulfosarcina/Desulfococcus clade) due to an adverse effect of seawater acidification and oil hydrocarbon contamination (reduced pH-oil treatment) may be coupled to changes in sediment archaeal communities. In particular, we observed a pronounced compositional shift and marked reduction in the prevalence of otherwise abundant operational taxonomic units (OTUs) belonging to the archaeal Marine Benthic Group B and Marine Hydrothermal Vent Group (MHVG) in the reduced pH-oil treatment. Conversely, the abundance of several putative hydrocarbonoclastic fungal OTUs was higher in the reduced pH-oil treatment. Sediment hydrocarbon profiling, furthermore, revealed higher concentrations of several alkanes in the reduced pH-oil treatment, corroborating the functional implications of the structural changes to microbial community composition. Collectively, our results advance the understanding of the response of a complex microbial community to the interaction between reduced pH and anthropogenic pollution. In future acidified marine environments, oil hydrocarbon contamination may alter the typical mixotrophic and k-/r-strategist composition of surface sediment microbiomes towards a more heterotrophic state with lower doubling rates, thereby impairing the ability of the ecosystem to recover from acute oil contamination events.

  13. A comparison of response cost and differential reinforcement of other behavior to reduce disruptive behavior in a preschool classroom.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Conyers, Carole; Miltenberger, Raymond; Maki, Amber; Barenz, Rebecca; Jurgens, Mandy; Sailer, Angela; Haugen, Meredith; Kopp, Brandon

    2004-01-01

    This study investigated the effectiveness of response cost and differential reinforcement of other behavior (DRO) in reducing the disruptive behaviors of 25 children in a preschool classroom. Using an alternating treatments design, disruptive behavior was reduced when the participants earned tokens for the absence of disruptive behavior (DRO) or lost tokens for the occurrence of disruptive behavior (response cost). Initially, DRO was more successful in reducing the number of disruptive behaviors; however, over time, response cost proved to be more effective.

  14. Visual short-term memory load reduces retinotopic cortex response to contrast.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Konstantinou, Nikos; Bahrami, Bahador; Rees, Geraint; Lavie, Nilli

    2012-11-01

    Load Theory of attention suggests that high perceptual load in a task leads to reduced sensory visual cortex response to task-unrelated stimuli resulting in "load-induced blindness" [e.g., Lavie, N. Attention, distraction and cognitive control under load. Current Directions in Psychological Science, 19, 143-148, 2010; Lavie, N. Distracted and confused?: Selective attention under load. Trends in Cognitive Sciences, 9, 75-82, 2005]. Consideration of the findings that visual STM (VSTM) involves sensory recruitment [e.g., Pasternak, T., & Greenlee, M. Working memory in primate sensory systems. Nature Reviews Neuroscience, 6, 97-107, 2005] within Load Theory led us to a new hypothesis regarding the effects of VSTM load on visual processing. If VSTM load draws on sensory visual capacity, then similar to perceptual load, high VSTM load should also reduce visual cortex response to incoming stimuli leading to a failure to detect them. We tested this hypothesis with fMRI and behavioral measures of visual detection sensitivity. Participants detected the presence of a contrast increment during the maintenance delay in a VSTM task requiring maintenance of color and position. Increased VSTM load (manipulated by increased set size) led to reduced retinotopic visual cortex (V1-V3) responses to contrast as well as reduced detection sensitivity, as we predicted. Additional visual detection experiments established a clear tradeoff between the amount of information maintained in VSTM and detection sensitivity, while ruling out alternative accounts for the effects of VSTM load in terms of differential spatial allocation strategies or task difficulty. These findings extend Load Theory to demonstrate a new form of competitive interactions between early visual cortex processing and visual representations held in memory under load and provide a novel line of support for the sensory recruitment hypothesis of VSTM.

  15. Assessing Lake Trophic Status: A Proportional Odds Logistic Regression Model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lake trophic state classifications are good predictors of ecosystem condition and are indicative of both ecosystem services (e.g., recreation and aesthetics), and disservices (e.g., harmful algal blooms). Methods for classifying trophic state are based off the foundational work o...

  16. Trophic niche-space imaging, using resource and consumer traits

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Nagelkerke, L.A.J.; Rossberg, A.G.

    2014-01-01

    The strength of trophic (feeding) links between two species depends on the traits of both the consumer and the resource. But which traits of consumer and resource have to be measured to predict link strengths, and how many? A novel theoretical framework for systematically determining trophic traits

  17. Climate Change and Baleen Whale Trophic Cascades in Greenland

    Science.gov (United States)

    2009-09-30

    DISTRIBUTION STATEMENT A: Approved for public release; distribution is unlimited. Climate Change and Baleen Whale Trophic Cascades in Greenland...SUBTITLE Climate Change And Baleen Whale Trophic Cascades In Greenland 5a. CONTRACT NUMBER 5b. GRANT NUMBER 5c. PROGRAM ELEMENT NUMBER 6. AUTHOR(S

  18. Trophic niche-space imaging, using resource and consumer traits

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Nagelkerke, L.A.J.; Rossberg, A.G.

    2014-01-01

    The strength of trophic (feeding) links between two species depends on the traits of both the consumer and the resource. But which traits of consumer and resource have to be measured to predict link strengths, and how many? A novel theoretical framework for systematically determining trophic traits

  19. Potential trophic cascades triggered by the barred owl range expansion

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holm, Samantha R.; Noon, Barry R.; Wiens, David; Ripple, William J.

    2016-01-01

    Recently, the barred owl (Strix varia) has expanded its range into the Pacific Northwest of the United States resulting in pronounced effects on the demography and behavior of the northern spotted owl (S. occidentalis caurina). The range expansion has brought together historically allopatric species, creating the potential for significant changes in the avian predator community with possible cascading effects on food-web dynamics. The adverse effects of the barred owl on the behavior and demography of the northern spotted owl are well-documented, but little is known about the immediate and long-term effects changes in the predator community may have on native species composition and ecosystem processes. Based on northern spotted owl and barred owl selection for diet and habitat resources, there is a potential for trophic cascades within the region's predator and prey communities, differing responses by their shared and unique prey species, and possible direct and indirect effects on ecosystem processes. We explored the possible ecological consequences of the barred owl range expansion to wildlife communities of the Pacific Northwest based on the theoretical underpinnings of predator–prey relationships, interspecific competition, intraguild predation, and potential cascading trophic interactions. Negative effects on fitness of northern spotted owls because of interspecific competition with barred owls are strong selection forces that may contribute to the regional extinction of the northern spotted owl. In addition, we posit that shared prey species and those uniquely consumed by barred owls, along with other competing native predators, may experience changes in behavior, abundance, and distribution as a result of increased rates of predation by rapidly expanding populations of barred owls.

  20. Science for a wilder Anthropocene: Synthesis and future directions for trophic rewilding research

    OpenAIRE

    Svenning, Jens-Christian; Pedersen, Pil B. M.; Donlan, C. Josh; Ejrnæs, Rasmus; Faurby, Søren; Galetti, Mauro; Hansen, Dennis M.; Sandel, Brody; Sandom, Christopher J.; Terborgh, John W.; Vera, Frans W M

    2015-01-01

    Trophic rewilding is an ecological restoration strategy that uses species introductions to restore top-down trophic interactions and associated trophic cascades to promote self-regulating biodiverse ecosystems. Given the importance of large animals in trophic cascades and their widespread losses and resulting trophic downgrading, it often focuses on restoring functional megafaunas. Trophic rewilding is increasingly being implemented for conservation, but remains controversial. Here, we provid...

  1. Negative infrared photocurrent response in layered WS{sub 2}/reduced graphene oxide hybrids

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ratha, Satyajit; Rout, Chandra Sekhar, E-mail: datta099@gmail.com, E-mail: csrout@iitbbs.ac.in [School of Basic Sciences, Indian Institute of Technology, Bhubaneswar 751013 (India); Simbeck, Adam J. [Department of Physics, Applied Physics, and Astronomy, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Troy, New York 12180 (United States); Late, Dattatray J., E-mail: datta099@gmail.com, E-mail: csrout@iitbbs.ac.in [CSIR-National Chemical Laboratory, Physical and Materials Chemistry Division, Dr. Homi Bhabha Road, Pune 411008 (India); Nayak, Saroj K. [School of Basic Sciences, Indian Institute of Technology, Bhubaneswar 751013 (India); Department of Physics, Applied Physics, and Astronomy, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Troy, New York 12180 (United States)

    2014-12-15

    We report high performance IR photocurrent response of two-dimensional hybrid materials consisting of layered WS{sub 2} nanosheets and reduced graphene oxide (RGO). Comparative photocurrent response studies of WS{sub 2} nanosheets, RGO, and WS{sub 2}/RGO hybrids were carried out by performing current-voltage (I-V) and time-dependent current measurements with a laser excitation source having a wavelength of 808 nm. The experimental investigations indicate that WS{sub 2}/RGO hybrids show negative photocurrent response, whereas WS{sub 2} and RGO show positive photocurrent response. The negative photocurrent response of the WS{sub 2}/RGO hybrids is explained using a band alignment diagram and attributed to a charge transfer mechanism between WS{sub 2} and RGO. This analysis is further corroborated by first-principles density functional calculations. The fabricated device based on WS{sub 2}/RGO hybrids shows a photosensitivity R{sub λ} of about 6 AW{sup −1} and a quantum efficiency η of ∼924%, which demonstrates high sensitivity of the hybrid material towards IR detection. WS{sub 2}/RGO hybrids are therefore promising candidates for potential applications in optoelectronic circuits and low cost, high performance, and reliable photodetectors.

  2. Training increases anabolic response and reduces inflammatory response to a single practice in elite male adolescent volleyball players.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nemet, Dan; Portal, Shawn; Zadik, Zvi; Pilz-Burstein, Rutie; Adler-Portal, Dana; Meckel, Yoav; Eliakim, Alon

    2012-01-01

    We examined the effect of training on hormonal and inflammatory response to a single volleyball practice in elite adolescent players. Fourteen male, elite, national team-level, Israeli volleyball players (age, 16.3±1.1 years, Tanner stage 4-5) participated in the study. Blood samples were collected before and immediately after a typical 60-min volleyball practice, before and after 7 weeks of training during the initial phases of the volleyball season. Hormonal measurements included the anabolic hormones growth hormone (GH), insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF-1), IGF-binding protein 3, and testosterone; the catabolic hormone cortisol; the pro-inflammatory markers interleukin (IL) 6, and the anti-inflammatory marker IL-1 receptor antagonist. Training led to a significant improvement of both anaerobic and aerobic properties. Before the training intervention, the typical volleyball practice was associated with a significant increase of GH and testosterone and also with a significant increase of IL-6. Training resulted in a significantly greater GH response (ΔGH, 2.5±2.4 vs. 4.7±3.0 ng/mL, before and after training, respectively; pvolleyball practice. The results suggest that, along with the improvement of anaerobic and aerobic characteristics, training leads to a greater anabolic and reduced inflammatory response to exercise.

  3. Reduced left precentral regional responses in patients with major depressive disorder and history of suicide attempts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsujii, Noa; Mikawa, Wakako; Tsujimoto, Emi; Adachi, Toru; Niwa, Atsushi; Ono, Hisae; Shirakawa, Osamu

    2017-01-01

    Previous neuroimaging studies have revealed frontal and temporal functional abnormalities in patients with major depressive disorder (MDD) and a history of suicidal behavior. However, it is unknown whether multi-channel near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) signal changes among individuals with MDD are associated with a history of suicide attempts and a diathesis for suicidal behavior (impulsivity, hopelessness, and aggression). Therefore, we aimed to explore frontotemporal hemodynamic responses in depressed patients with a history of suicide attempts using 52-channel NIRS. We recruited 30 patients with MDD and a history of suicidal behavior (suicide attempters; SAs), 38 patient controls without suicidal behavior (non-attempters; NAs), and 40 healthy controls (HCs) matched by age, gender ratio, and estimated IQ. Regional hemodynamic responses during a verbal fluency task (VFT) were monitored using NIRS. Our results showed that severities of depression, impulsivity, aggression, and hopelessness were similar between SAs and NAs. Both patient groups had significantly reduced activation compared with HCs in the bilateral frontotemporal regions. Post hoc analyses revealed that SAs exhibited a smaller hemodynamic response in the left precentral gyrus than NAs and HCs. Furthermore, the reduced response in the left inferior frontal gyrus was negatively correlated with impulsivity level and hemodynamic responses in the right middle frontal gyrus were negatively associated with hopelessness and aggression in SAs but not in NAs and HCs. Our findings suggest that MDD patients with a history of suicide attempts demonstrate patterns of VFT-induced NIRS signal changes different from those demonstrated by individuals without a history of suicidal behaviors, even in cases where clinical symptoms are similar. NIRS has a relatively high time resolution, which may help visually differentiate SAs from NAs.

  4. Maize and resistant starch enriched breads reduce postprandial glycemic responses in rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brites, Carla M; Trigo, Maria J; Carrapiço, Belmira; Alviña, Marcela; Bessa, Rui J

    2011-04-01

    White wheat bread is a poor source of dietary fiber, typically containing less than 2%. A demand exists for the development of breads with starch that is slowly digestible or partially resistant to the digestive process. The utilization of maize flour and resistant starch is expected to reduce the release and absorption of glucose and, hence, lower the glycemic index of bread. This study was undertaken to investigate the hypothesis that a diet of maize bread, as produced and consumed in Portugal, would have beneficial metabolic effects on rats compared to white wheat bread. We also hypothesized that the effect of resistant starch on glycemic response could be altered by the use of different formulations and breadmaking processes for wheat and maize breads. Resistant starch (RS) was incorporated into formulations of breads at 20% of the inclusion rate of wheat and maize flours. Assays were conducted with male Wistar rats (n = 36), divided into four groups and fed either wheat bread, RS-wheat bread, maize bread, and RS-maize bread to evaluate feed intake, body weight gain, fecal pH, and postprandial blood glucose response (glycemic response). Blood triglycerides, total cholesterol concentrations, and liver weights were also determined. The maize bread group presented higher body weight gain and cholesterol level, lower fecal pH, and postprandial blood glucose response than the wheat bread group. The RS-wheat bread group showed significant reductions in feed intake, fecal pH, postprandial blood glucose response, and total cholesterol. The RS-maize group displayed significant reductions of body weight gain, fecal pH, and total cholesterol levels; however, for the glycemic response, only a reduction in fasting level was observed. These results suggest that maize bread has a lower glycemic index than wheat bread, and the magnitude of the effect of RS on glycemic response depends of type of bread.

  5. Early error detection predicted by reduced pre-response control process: an ERP topographic mapping study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pourtois, Gilles

    2011-01-01

    Advanced ERP topographic mapping techniques were used to study error monitoring functions in human adult participants, and test whether proactive attentional effects during the pre-response time period could later influence early error detection mechanisms (as measured by the ERN component) or not. Participants performed a speeded go/nogo task, and made a substantial number of false alarms that did not differ from correct hits as a function of behavioral speed or actual motor response. While errors clearly elicited an ERN component generated within the dACC following the onset of these incorrect responses, I also found that correct hits were associated with a different sequence of topographic events during the pre-response baseline time-period, relative to errors. A main topographic transition from occipital to posterior parietal regions (including primarily the precuneus) was evidenced for correct hits ~170-150 ms before the response, whereas this topographic change was markedly reduced for errors. The same topographic transition was found for correct hits that were eventually performed slower than either errors or fast (correct) hits, confirming the involvement of this distinctive posterior parietal activity in top-down attentional control rather than motor preparation. Control analyses further ensured that this pre-response topographic effect was not related to differences in stimulus processing. Furthermore, I found a reliable association between the magnitude of the ERN following errors and the duration of this differential precuneus activity during the pre-response baseline, suggesting a functional link between an anticipatory attentional control component subserved by the precuneus and early error detection mechanisms within the dACC. These results suggest reciprocal links between proactive attention control and decision making processes during error monitoring.

  6. Assessment of trophic ecomorphology in non-alligatoroid crocodylians and its adaptive and taxonomic implications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Iijima, Masaya

    2017-08-01

    Although the establishment of trophic ecomorphology in living crocodylians can contribute to estimating feeding habits of extinct large aquatic reptiles, assessment of ecomorphological traits other than the snout shape has scarcely been conducted in crocodylians. Here, I tested the validity of the proposed trophic ecomorphological traits in crocodylians by examining the correlation between those traits and the snout shape (an established trophic ecomorphology), using 10 non-alligatoroid crocodylian species with a wide range of snout shape. I then compared the ontogenetic scaling of trophic ecomorphology to discuss its adaptive and taxonomic significance. The results demonstrated that degree of heterodonty, tooth spacing, size of supratemporal fenestra (STF), ventral extension of pterygoid flange and length of lower jaw symphysis are significantly correlated with snout shape by both non-phylogenetic and phylogenetic regression analyses. Gavialis gangeticus falls outside of 95% prediction intervals for the relationships of some traits and the snout shape, suggesting that piscivorous specialization involves the deviation from the typical transformation axis of skull characters. The comparative snout shape ontogeny revealed a universal trend of snout widening through growth in the sampled crocodylians, implying the existence of a shared size-dependent biomechanical constraint in non-alligatoroid crocodylians. Growth patterns of other traits indicated that G. gangeticus shows atypical trends for degree of heterodonty, size of STF, and symphysis length, whereas the same trends are shared for tooth spacing and ventral extension of pterygoid flange among non-alligatoroid crocodylians. These suggest that some characters are ontogenetically labile in response to prey preference shifts through growth, but other characters are in keeping with the conserved biomechanics among non-alligatoroid crocodylians. Some important taxonomic characters such as the occlusal pattern are

  7. Dominant predators mediate the impact of habitat size on trophic structure in bromeliad invertebrate communities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Petermann, Jana S; Farjalla, Vinicius F; Jocque, Merlijn; Kratina, Pavel; MacDonald, A Andrew M; Marino, Nicholas A C; De Omena, Paula M; Piccoli, Gustavo C O; Richardson, Barbara A; Richardson, Michael J; Romero, Gustavo Q; Videla, Martin; Srivastava, Diane S

    2015-02-01

    Local habitat size has been shown to influence colonization and extinction processes of species in patchy environments. However, species differ in body size, mobility, and trophic level, and may not respond in the same way to habitat size. Thus far, we have a limited understanding of how habitat size influences the structure of multitrophic communities and to what extent the effects may be generalizable over a broad geographic range. Here, we used water-filled bromeliads of different sizes as a natural model system to examine the effects of habitat size on the trophic structure of their inhabiting invertebrate communities. We collected composition and biomass data from 651 bromeliad communities from eight sites across Central and South America differing in environmental conditions, species pools, and the presence of large-bodied odonate predators. We found that trophic structure in the communities changed dramatically with changes in habitat (bromeliad) size. Detritivore : resource ratios showed a consistent negative relationship with habitat size across sites. In contrast, changes in predator: detritivore (prey) ratios depended on the presence of odonates as dominant predators in the regional pool. At sites without odonates, predator: detritivore biomass ratios decreased with increasing habitat size. At sites with odonates, we found odonates to be more frequently present in large than in small bromeliads, and predator: detritivore biomass ratios increased with increasing habitat size to the point where some trophic pyramids became inverted. Our results show that the distribution of biomass amongst food-web levels depends strongly on habitat size, largely irrespective of geographic differences in environmental conditions or detritivore species compositions. However, the presence of large-bodied predators in the regional species pool may fundamentally alter this relationship between habitat size and trophic structure. We conclude that taking into account the

  8. Significantly improved photocurrent response of ZnS-reduced graphene oxide composites

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sookhakian, M., E-mail: m.sokhakian@gmail.com [Department of Physics, Faculty of Science, University of Malaya, Kuala Lumpur 50603 (Malaysia); Amin, Y.M. [Department of Physics, Faculty of Science, University of Malaya, Kuala Lumpur 50603 (Malaysia); Zakaria, R. [Department of Physics, Faculty of Science, University of Malaya, Kuala Lumpur 50603 (Malaysia); Photonics Research Centre, Faculty of Science, University of Malaya, Kuala Lumpur 50603 (Malaysia); Basirun, W.J. [Department of Chemistry, Faculty of Science, University of Malaya, Kuala Lumpur 50603 (Malaysia); Institute of Nanotechnology & Catalysis Research (NanoCat), University Malaya, Kuala Lumpur 50603 (Malaysia); Mahmoudian, M.R. [Department of Chemistry, Faculty of Science, University of Malaya, Kuala Lumpur 50603 (Malaysia); Nasiri-Tabrizi, B.; Baradaran, S. [Department of Mechanical Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, University of Malaya, Kuala Lumpur 50603 (Malaysia); Azarang, Majid [Department of Physics, Faculty of Science, University of Malaya, Kuala Lumpur 50603 (Malaysia)

    2015-05-25

    Highlights: • ZnS/reduced graphene oxide nanoparticles by hydrothermal method. • ZnS nanoparticles in a gelatin medium without agglomeration. • Support of ZnS shows efficient photocurrent response. • The fabricated solar cell electrode improved in the presence of reduced graphene oxide. - Abstract: ZnS-nanoparticles (NPs) reduced graphene oxide (rGO) composites with a high degree of crystallinity and high dispersity were successfully synthesized via a facile solvothermal method in the gelatin medium, during which the formation of ZnS NPs, reduction of graphene oxide and loading of ZnS NPs into the rGO surface occur simultaneously. Gelatin, as a natural capping agent, plays a significant role in controlling the degree of dispersion and coverage of ZnS NPs. The effect of rGO on the crystalline structure and optical properties of ZnS NPs were determined via X-ray diffraction, UV–visible diffused reflectance spectroscopy and photoluminescence spectroscopy. The ZnS–rGO composites exhibit excellent potential for photocurrent generation compared with pure ZnS NPs under visible light irradiation, provided that efficient photoinduced charge separation and transportation can be achieved at the interface. The maximum photocurrent response was obtained for ZnS–rGO composite with a 3% mass fraction of rGO, which is 2 times that achieved on pure ZnS NPs.

  9. Protein energy malnutrition alters mucosal IgA responses and reduces mucosal vaccine efficacy in mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rho, Semi; Kim, Heejoo; Shim, Seung Hyun; Lee, Seung Young; Kim, Min Jung; Yang, Bo-Gie; Jang, Myoung Ho; Han, Byung Woo; Song, Man Ki; Czerkinsky, Cecil; Kim, Jae-Ouk

    2017-08-30

    Oral vaccine responsiveness is often lower in children from less developed countries. Childhood malnutrition may be associated with poor immune response to oral vaccines. The present study was designed to investigate whether protein energy malnutrition (PEM) impairs B cell immunity and ultimately reduces oral vaccine efficacy in a mouse model. Purified isocaloric diets containing low protein (1/10 the protein of the control diet) were used to determine the effect of PEM. PEM increased both nonspecific total IgA and oral antigen-specific IgA in serum without alteration of gut permeability. However, PEM decreased oral antigen-specific IgA in feces, which is consistent with decreased expression of polymeric Immunoglobulin receptor (pIgR) in the small intestine. Of note, polymeric IgA was predominant in serum under PEM. In addition, PEM altered B cell development status in the bone marrow and increased the frequency of IgA-secreting B cells, as well as IgA secretion by long-lived plasma cells in the small intestinal lamina propria. Moreover, PEM reduced the protective efficacy of the mucosally administered cholera vaccine and recombinant attenuated Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium vaccine in a mouse model. Our results suggest that PEM can impair mucosal immunity where IgA plays an important role in host protection and may partly explain the reduced efficacy of oral vaccines in malnourished subjects. Copyright © 2017 European Federation of Immunological Societies. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  10. Reduced Density Matrix Functional Theory (RDMFT) and Linear Response Time-Dependent RDMFT (TD-RDMFT).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pernal, Katarzyna; Giesbertz, Klaas J H

    2016-01-01

    Recent advances in reduced density matrix functional theory (RDMFT) and linear response time-dependent reduced density matrix functional theory (TD-RDMFT) are reviewed. In particular, we present various approaches to develop approximate density matrix functionals which have been employed in RDMFT. We discuss the properties and performance of most available density matrix functionals. Progress in the development of functionals has been paralleled by formulation of novel RDMFT-based methods for predicting properties of molecular systems and solids. We give an overview of these methods. The time-dependent extension, TD-RDMFT, is a relatively new theory still awaiting practical and generally useful functionals which would work within the adiabatic approximation. In this chapter we concentrate on the formulation of TD-RDMFT response equations and various adiabatic approximations. None of the adiabatic approximations is fully satisfactory, so we also discuss a phase-dependent extension to TD-RDMFT employing the concept of phase-including-natural-spinorbitals (PINOs). We focus on applications of the linear response formulations to two-electron systems, for which the (almost) exact functional is known.

  11. Zonal-mean circulation response to reduced air-sea momentum roughness

    CERN Document Server

    Polichtchouk, I

    2016-01-01

    The impact of uncertainties in surface layer physics on the atmospheric general circulation is comparatively unexplored. Here the sensitivity of the zonal-mean circulation to reduced air-sea momentum roughness ($Z_{0m}$) at low flow speed is investigated with the Community Atmosphere Model (CAM3). In an aquaplanet framework with prescribed sea surface temperatures, the response to reduced $Z_{0m}$ resembles the La Ni$\\tilde{\\text{n}}$a minus El Ni$\\tilde{\\text{n}}$o response to El Ni$\\tilde{\\text{n}}$o Southern Oscillation variability with: i) a poleward shift of the mid-latitude westerlies extending all the way to the surface; ii) a weak poleward shift of the subtropical descent region; and iii) a weakening of the Hadley circulation, which is generally also accompanied by a poleward shift of the inter-tropical convergence zone (ITCZ) and the tropical surface easterlies. Mechanism-denial experiments show this response to be initiated by the reduction of tropical latent and sensible heat fluxes, effected by re...

  12. DYNAMIC PLASTICITY: THE ROLE OF GLUCOCORTICOIDS, BRAIN-DERIVED NEUROTROPHIC FACTOR AND OTHER TROPHIC FACTORS

    OpenAIRE

    Gray, J. D.; MILNER, T. A.; MCEWEN, B. S.

    2012-01-01

    Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) is a secreted protein that has been linked to numerous aspects of plasticity in the central nervous system (CNS). Stress-induced remodeling of the hippocampus, prefrontal cortex and amygdala is coincident with changes in the levels of BDNF, which has been shown to act as a trophic factor facilitating the survival of existing and newly born neurons. Initially, hippocampal atrophy after chronic stress was associated with reduced BDNF, leading to the hypo...

  13. Biaryl amide compounds reduce the inflammatory response in macrophages by regulating Dectin-1.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hyung, Kyeong Eun; Lee, Mi Ji; Lee, Yun-Jung; Lee, Do Ik; Min, Hye Young; Park, So-Young; Min, Kyung Hoon; Hwang, Kwang Woo

    2016-03-01

    Macrophages are archetypal innate immune cells that play crucial roles in the recognition and phagocytosis of invading pathogens, which they identify using pattern recognition receptors (PRRs). Dectin-1 is essential for antifungal immune responses, recognizing the fungal cellular component β-glucan, and its role as a PRR has been of increasing interest. Previously, we discovered and characterized a novel biaryl amide compound, MPS 03, capable of inhibiting macrophage phagocytosis of zymosan. Therefore, in this study we aimed to identify other biaryl amide compounds with greater effectiveness than MPS 03, and elucidate their cellular mechanisms. Several MPS 03 derivatives were screened, four of which reduced zymosan phagocytosis in a similar manner to MPS 03. To establish whether such phagocytosis inhibition influenced the production of inflammatory mediators, pro-inflammatory cytokine and nitric oxide (NO) levels were measured. The production of TNF-α, IL-6, IL-12, and NO was significantly reduced in a dose-dependent manner. Moreover, the inflammation-associated MAPK signaling pathway was also affected by biaryl amide compounds. To investigate the underlying cellular mechanism, PRR expression was measured. MPS 03 and its derivatives were found to inhibit zymosan phagocytosis by decreasing Dectin-1 expression. Furthermore, when macrophages were stimulated by zymosan after pretreatment with biaryl amide compounds, downstream transcription factors such as NFAT, AP-1, and NF-κB were downregulated. In conclusion, biaryl amide compounds reduce zymosan-induced inflammatory responses by downregulating Dectin-1 expression. Therefore, such compounds could be used to inhibit Dectin-1 in immunological experiments and possibly regulate excessive inflammatory responses.

  14. High Dietary Folate in Mice Alters Immune Response and Reduces Survival after Malarial Infection.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Danielle N Meadows

    Full Text Available Malaria is a significant global health issue, with nearly 200 million cases in 2013 alone. Parasites obtain folate from the host or synthesize it de novo. Folate consumption has increased in many populations, prompting concerns regarding potential deleterious consequences of higher intake. The impact of high dietary folate on the host's immune function and response to malaria has not been examined. Our goal was to determine whether high dietary folate would affect response to malarial infection in a murine model of cerebral malaria. Mice were fed control diets (CD, recommended folate level for rodents or folic acid-supplemented diets (FASD, 10x recommended level for 5 weeks before infection with Plasmodium berghei ANKA. Survival, parasitemia, numbers of immune cells and other infection parameters were assessed. FASD mice had reduced survival (p<0.01, Cox proportional hazards and higher parasitemia (p< 0.01, joint model of parasitemia and survival compared with CD mice. FASD mice had lower numbers of splenocytes, total T cells, and lower numbers of specific T and NK cell sub-populations, compared with CD mice (p<0.05, linear mixed effects. Increased brain TNFα immunoreactive protein (p<0.01, t-test and increased liver Abca1 mRNA (p<0.01, t-test, a modulator of TNFα, were observed in FASD mice; these variables correlated positively (rs = 0.63, p = 0.01. Bcl-xl/Bak mRNA was increased in liver of FASD mice (p<0.01, t-test, suggesting reduced apoptotic potential. We conclude that high dietary folate increases parasite replication, disturbs the immune response and reduces resistance to malaria in mice. These findings have relevance for malaria-endemic regions, when considering anti-folate anti-malarials, food fortification or vitamin supplementation programs.

  15. Tuning in to teens: Improving parental responses to anger and reducing youth externalizing behavior problems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Havighurst, Sophie S; Kehoe, Christiane E; Harley, Ann E

    2015-07-01

    Parent emotion socialization plays an important role in shaping emotional and behavioral development during adolescence. The Tuning in to Teens (TINT) program aims to improve parents' responses to young people's emotions with a focus on teaching emotion coaching. This study examined the efficacy of the TINT program in improving emotion socialization practices in parents and whether this reduced family conflict and youth externalizing difficulties. Schools were randomized into intervention and control conditions and 225 primary caregiving parents and 224 youth took part in the study. Self-report data was collected from parents and youth during the young person's final year of elementary school and again in their first year of secondary school. Multilevel analyses showed significant improvements in parent's impulse control difficulties and emotion socialization, as well as significant reductions in family conflict and youth externalizing difficulties. This study provides support for the TINT program in reducing youth externalizing behavior problems.

  16. Optimization of Fat-Reduced Puff Pastry Using Response Surface Methodology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Silow, Christoph; Zannini, Emanuele; Axel, Claudia; Belz, Markus C E; Arendt, Elke K

    2017-02-22

    Puff pastry is a high-fat bakery product with fat playing a key role, both during the production process and in the final pastry. In this study, response surface methodology (RSM) was successfully used to evaluate puff pastry quality for the development of a fat-reduced version. The technological parameters modified included the level of roll-in fat, the number of fat layers (50-200) and the final thickness (1.0-3.5 mm) of the laminated dough. Quality characteristics of puff pastry were measured using the Texture Analyzer with an attached Extended Craft Knife (ECK) and Multiple Puncture Probe (MPP), the VolScan and the C-Cell imaging system. The number of fat layers and final dough thickness, in combination with the amount of roll-in fat, had a significant impact on the internal and external structural quality parameters. With technological changes alone, a fat-reduced (≥30%) puff pastry was developed. The qualities of fat-reduced puff pastries were comparable to conventional full-fat (33 wt %) products. A sensory acceptance test revealed no significant differences in taste of fatness or 'liking of mouthfeel'. Additionally, the fat-reduced puff pastry resulted in a significant (p < 0.05) positive correlation to 'liking of flavor' and overall acceptance by the assessors.

  17. Resolvin D1 Reduces the Immunoinflammatory Response of the Rat Eye following Uveitis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rossi Settimio

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available This study investigated whether the administration of resolvin D1 to rats with endotoxininduced uveitis (EIU ameliorates the immuno-inflammatory profile of the eye. 24 h after the administration of 200 μg LPS into the footpad of Sprague-Dawley rats, severe changes of the structure of the eye occurred concomitantly with a severe inflammatory and immune response. These latter included strong infiltration of PMN leukocytes CD11b+ T-lymphocytes CD4+ and CD8+ within the eye and a significant release of the cytokines/chemokines TNF-alpha, CXCL8, and RANTES too. Bolus of resolvin D1 (RvD1; 10–100–1000 ng/kg in 200 μL of sterile saline via the tail vein significantly and dose-dependently (i reduced the development of the ocular derangement caused by LPS; (ii reduced the clinical score attributed to EIU; (iii reduced the protein concentration and myeloperoxidase activity (MPO in aqueous humor (AqH; and (iv reduced neutrophils, T-lymphocytes, and cytokines within the eye.

  18. Optimization of Fat-Reduced Puff Pastry Using Response Surface Methodology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Silow, Christoph; Zannini, Emanuele; Axel, Claudia; Belz, Markus C. E.; Arendt, Elke K.

    2017-01-01

    Puff pastry is a high-fat bakery product with fat playing a key role, both during the production process and in the final pastry. In this study, response surface methodology (RSM) was successfully used to evaluate puff pastry quality for the development of a fat-reduced version. The technological parameters modified included the level of roll-in fat, the number of fat layers (50–200) and the final thickness (1.0–3.5 mm) of the laminated dough. Quality characteristics of puff pastry were measured using the Texture Analyzer with an attached Extended Craft Knife (ECK) and Multiple Puncture Probe (MPP), the VolScan and the C-Cell imaging system. The number of fat layers and final dough thickness, in combination with the amount of roll-in fat, had a significant impact on the internal and external structural quality parameters. With technological changes alone, a fat-reduced (≥30%) puff pastry was developed. The qualities of fat-reduced puff pastries were comparable to conventional full-fat (33 wt %) products. A sensory acceptance test revealed no significant differences in taste of fatness or ‘liking of mouthfeel’. Additionally, the fat-reduced puff pastry resulted in a significant (p < 0.05) positive correlation to ‘liking of flavor’ and overall acceptance by the assessors. PMID:28231095

  19. The uncertainty of crop yield projections is reduced by improved temperature response functions

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wang, Enli; Martre, Pierre; Zhao, Zhigan

    2017-01-01

    Increasing the accuracy of crop productivity estimates is a key element in planning adaptation strategies to ensure global food security under climate change. Process-based crop models are effective means to project climate impact on crop yield, but have large uncertainty in yield simulations. Here...... response functions that when substituted in four wheat models reduced the error in grain yield simulations across seven global sites with different temperature regimes by 19% to 50% (42% average). We anticipate the improved temperature responses to be a key step to improve modelling of crops under rising...... temperature and climate change, leading to higher skill of crop yield projections. Process-based modelling of crop growth is an effective way of representing how crop genotype, environment and management interactions affect crop production to aid tactical and strategic decision making1. Process-based crop...

  20. POD/MAC-Based Modal Basis Selection for a Reduced Order Nonlinear Response Analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rizzi, Stephen A.; Przekop, Adam

    2007-01-01

    A feasibility study was conducted to explore the applicability of a POD/MAC basis selection technique to a nonlinear structural response analysis. For the case studied the application of the POD/MAC technique resulted in a substantial improvement of the reduced order simulation when compared to a classic approach utilizing only low frequency modes present in the excitation bandwidth. Further studies are aimed to expand application of the presented technique to more complex structures including non-planar and two-dimensional configurations. For non-planar structures the separation of different displacement components may not be necessary or desirable.

  1. The Unfolded Protein Response and Chemical Chaperones Reduce Protein Misfolding and Colitis in Mice

    Science.gov (United States)

    CAO, STEWART SIYAN; ZIMMERMANN, ELLEN M.; CHUANG, BRANDY–MENGCHIEH; SONG, BENBO; NWOKOYE, ANOSIKE; WILKINSON, J. ERBY; EATON, KATHRYN A.; KAUFMAN, RANDAL J.

    2013-01-01

    BACKGROUND & AIMS Endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress has been associated with development of inflammatory bowel disease. We examined the effects of ER stress–induced chaperone response and the orally active chemical chaperones tauroursodeoxycholate (TUDCA) and 4-phenylbutyrate (PBA), which facilitate protein folding and reduce ER stress, in mice with colitis. METHODS We used dextran sulfate sodium (DSS) to induce colitis in mice that do not express the transcription factor ATF6α or the protein chaperone P58IPK. We examined the effects of TUDCA and PBA in cultured intestinal epithelial cells (IECs); in wild-type, P58IPK−/−, and Atf6α−/− mice with colitis; and in Il10−/− mice. RESULTS P58IPK−/− and Atf6α−/− mice developed more severe colitis following administration of DSS than wild-type mice. IECs from P58IPK−/− mice had excessive ER stress, and apoptotic signaling was activated in IECs from Atf6α−/− mice. Inflammatory stimuli induced ER stress signals in cultured IECs, which were reduced by incubation with TUDCA or PBA. Oral administration of either PBA or TUDCA reduced features of DSS-induced acute and chronic colitis in wild-type mice, the colitis that develops in Il10−/− mice, and DSS-induced colitis in P58IPK−/− and Atf6α−/− mice. Reduced signs of colonic inflammation in these mice were associated with significantly decreased ER stress in colonic epithelial cells. CONCLUSIONS The unfolded protein response induces expression of genes that encode chaperones involved in ER protein folding; these factors prevent induction of colitis in mice. Chemical chaperones such as TUDCA and PBA alleviate different forms of colitis in mice and might be developed for treatment of inflammatory bowel diseases. PMID:23336977

  2. Vitamin A supplementation reduces the monocyte chemoattractant protein-1 intestinal immune response of Mexican children.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Long, Kurt Z; Santos, Jose Ignacio; Estrada Garcia, Teresa; Haas, Meredith; Firestone, Mathew; Bhagwat, Jui; Dupont, Herbert L; Hertzmark, Ellen; Rosado, Jorge L; Nanthakumar, Nanda N

    2006-10-01

    The impact of vitamin A supplementation on childhood diarrhea may be determined by the regulatory effect supplementation has on the mucosal immune response in the gut. Previous studies have not addressed the impact of vitamin A supplementation on the production of monocyte chemoattractant protein 1 (MCP-1), an essential chemokine involved in pathogen-specific mucosal immune response. Fecal MCP-1 concentrations, determined by an enzyme-linked immuno absorption assay, were compared among 127 Mexican children 5-15 mo of age randomized to receive a vitamin A supplement ( or =12 mo, 45,000 iu) every 2 mo or a placebo as part of a larger vitamin A supplementation trial. Stools collected during the summer months were screened for MCP-1 and gastrointestinal pathogens. Values of MCP-1 were categorized into 3 levels (nondetectable, or =median). Multinomial logistic regression models were used to determine whether vitamin A-supplemented children had different categorical values of MCP-1 compared with children in the placebo group. Differences in categorical values were also analyzed stratified by gastrointestinal pathogen infections and by diarrheal symptoms. Overall, children who received the vitamin A supplement had reduced fecal concentrations of MCP-1 compared with children in the placebo group (median pg/mg protein +/- interquartile range: 284.88 +/- 885.35 vs. 403.39 +/- 913.16; odds ratio 0.64, 95% CI 0.42-97, P = 0.03). Vitamin A supplemented children infected with enteropathogenic Escherichia coli (EPEC) had reduced MCP-1 levels (odds ratio = 0.38, 95% CI 0.18-0.80) compared with children in the placebo group. Among children not infected with Ascaris lumbricoides vitamin A supplemented children had reduced MCP-1 levels (OR = 0.62, 95% CI 0.41-0.94). These findings suggest that vitamin A has an anti-inflammatory effect in the gastrointestinal tract by reducing MCP-1 concentrations.

  3. Reduced graphene oxide filled poly(dimethyl siloxane) based transparent stretchable, and touch-responsive sensors

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ponnamma, Deepalekshmi [Center for Advanced Materials, Qatar University, P. O. Box 2713, Doha (Qatar); Sadasivuni, Kishor Kumar; Cabibihan, John-John [Mechanical and Industrial Engineering, Qatar University, P.O. Box 2713, Doha (Qatar); Yoon, W. Jong [School of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics, University of Washington, Bothell, Washington 98011 (United States); Kumar, Bijandra, E-mail: bijandra.kumar@louisville.edu [Conn Center for Renewable Energy Research, University of Louisville, Louisville, Kentucky 40292 (United States); Research and Development Centre in Pharmaceutical Science and Applied Chemistry, Poona College of Pharmacy, Bharati Vidyapeeth Deemed University Erandawane, Pune 411038 (India)

    2016-04-25

    The ongoing revolution in touch panel technology and electronics demands the need for thin films, which are flexible, stretchable, conductive, and highly touch responsive. In this regard, conductive elastomer nanocomposites offer potential solutions for these stipulations; however, viability is limited to the poor dispersion of conductive nanomaterials such as graphene into the matrix. Here, we fabricated a reduced graphene oxide (rGO) and poly(dimethylsiloxane) (PDMS) elastomer based transparent and flexible conductive touch responsive film by dispersing rGO honeycombs uniformly into PDMS elastomer through an ionic liquid (IL) modification. Pursuing a simple, scalable, and safe method of solution casting, this provides a versatile and creative design of a transparent and stretchable rGO/IL-PDMS capacitive touch responsive, where rGO acts as a sensing element. This transparent film with ∼70% transmittance exhibits approximately a five times faster response in comparison to rGO/PDMS film, with negligible degradation over time. The performance of this touch screen film is expected to have applications in the emerging field of foldable electronics.

  4. Emotional intelligence is associated with reduced insula responses to masked angry faces.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alkozei, Anna; Killgore, William D S

    2015-07-08

    High levels of emotional intelligence (EI) have been associated with increased success in the workplace, greater quality of personal relationships, and enhanced wellbeing. Evidence suggests that EI is mediated extensively by the interplay of key emotion regions including the amygdala, insula, and ventromedial prefrontal cortex, among others. The insula, in particular, is important for processing interoceptive and somatic cues that are interpreted as emotional responses. We investigated the association between EI and functional brain responses within the aforementioned neurocircuitry in response to subliminal presentations of social threat. Fifty-four healthy adults completed the Mayer-Salovey-Caruso Emotional Intelligence Test (MSCEIT) and underwent functional magnetic brain imaging while viewing subliminal presentations of faces displaying anger, using a backward masked facial affect paradigm to minimize conscious awareness of the expressed emotion. In response to masked angry faces, the total MSCEIT scores correlated negatively with a cluster of activation located within the left insula, but not with activation in any other region of interest. Considering the insula's role in the processing of interoceptive emotional cues, the results suggest that greater EI is associated with reduced emotional visceral reactivity and/or more accurate interoceptive prediction when confronted with stimuli indicative of social threat.

  5. Rational application of chemicals in response to oil spills may reduce environmental damage.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tamis, Jacqueline E; Jongbloed, Ruud H; Karman, Chris C; Koops, Wierd; Murk, Albertinka J

    2012-04-01

    Oil spills, for example those due to tanker collisions and groundings or platform accidents, can have huge adverse impacts on marine systems. The impact of an oil spill at sea depends on a number of factors, such as spill volume, type of oil spilled, weather conditions, and proximity to environmentally, economically, or socially sensitive areas. Oil spilled at sea threatens marine organisms, whole ecosystems, and economic resources in the immediate vicinity, such as fisheries, aquaculture, recreation, and tourism. Adequate response to any oil spill to minimize damage is therefore of great importance. The common response to an oil spill is to remove all visible oil from the water surface, either mechanically or by using chemicals to disperse the oil into the water column to biodegrade. This is not always the most suitable response to an oil spill, as the chemical application itself may also have adverse effects, or no response may be needed. In this article we discuss advantages and disadvantages of using chemical treatments to reduce the impact of an oil spill in relation to the conditions of the spill. The main characteristics of chemical treatment agents are discussed and presented within the context of a basic decision support scheme. Copyright © 2011 SETAC.

  6. Reduced graphene oxide filled poly(dimethyl siloxane) based transparent stretchable, and touch-responsive sensors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ponnamma, Deepalekshmi; Sadasivuni, Kishor Kumar; Cabibihan, John-John; Yoon, W. Jong; Kumar, Bijandra

    2016-04-01

    The ongoing revolution in touch panel technology and electronics demands the need for thin films, which are flexible, stretchable, conductive, and highly touch responsive. In this regard, conductive elastomer nanocomposites offer potential solutions for these stipulations; however, viability is limited to the poor dispersion of conductive nanomaterials such as graphene into the matrix. Here, we fabricated a reduced graphene oxide (rGO) and poly(dimethylsiloxane) (PDMS) elastomer based transparent and flexible conductive touch responsive film by dispersing rGO honeycombs uniformly into PDMS elastomer through an ionic liquid (IL) modification. Pursuing a simple, scalable, and safe method of solution casting, this provides a versatile and creative design of a transparent and stretchable rGO/IL-PDMS capacitive touch responsive, where rGO acts as a sensing element. This transparent film with ˜70% transmittance exhibits approximately a five times faster response in comparison to rGO/PDMS film, with negligible degradation over time. The performance of this touch screen film is expected to have applications in the emerging field of foldable electronics.

  7. Training reduces catabolic and inflammatory response to a single practice in female volleyball players.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eliakim, Alon; Portal, Shawn; Zadik, Zvi; Meckel, Yoav; Nemet, Dan

    2013-11-01

    We examined the effect of training on hormonal and inflammatory response to a single volleyball practice in elite adolescent players. Thirteen female, national team level, Israeli volleyball players (age 16.0 ± 1.4 years, Tanner stage 4-5) participated in the study. Blood samples were collected before and immediately after a typical 60 minutes of volleyball practice, before and after 7 weeks of training during the initial phase of the season. Training involved tactic and technical drills (20% of time), power and speed drills (25% of time), interval sessions (25% of time), endurance-type training (15% of time), and resistance training (15% of time). To achieve greater training responses, the study was performed during the early phase (first 7 weeks) of the volleyball season. Hormonal measurements included the anabolic hormones growth hormone (GH), insulin-like growth factor-I (IGF-I) and IGF-binding protein-3, the catabolic hormone cortisol, the proinflammatory marker interleukin-6 (IL-6), and the anti-inflammatory marker IL-1 receptor antagonist. Training led to a significant improvement of vertical jump, anaerobic properties (peak and mean power by the Wingate Anaerobic Test), and predicted VO2max (by the 20-m shuttle run). Volleyball practice, both before and after the training intervention, was associated with a significant increase of serum lactate, GH, and IL-6. Training resulted in a significantly reduced cortisol response ([INCREMENT]cortisol: 4.2 ± 13.7 vs. -4.4 ± 12.3 ng · ml, before and after training, respectively; p volleyball practice. The results suggest that along with the improvement of power and anaerobic and aerobic characteristics, training reduces the catabolic and inflammatory response to exercise.

  8. Manipulations of cognitive strategies and intergroup relationships reduce the racial bias in empathic neural responses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sheng, Feng; Han, Shihui

    2012-07-16

    Social relationships affect empathy in humans such that empathic neural responses to perceived pain were stronger to racial in-group members than to racial out-group members. Why does the racial bias in empathy (RBE) occur and how can we reduce it? We hypothesized that perceiving an other-race person as a symbol of a racial group, rather than as an individual, decreases references to his/her personal situation and weakens empathy for that person. This hypothesis predicts that individuating other-race persons by increasing attention to each individual's feelings or enclosing other-race individuals within one's own social group can reduce the RBE by increasing empathic neural responses to other-race individuals. In Experiment 1, we recorded event related brain potentials from Chinese adults as they made race judgments on Asian and Caucasian faces with pain or neutral expressions. We identified the RBE by showing that, relative to neutral expressions, pain expressions increased neural responses at 128-188 ms after stimulus onset over the frontal/central brain regions, and this effect was evident for same-race faces but not for other-race faces. Experiments 2 and 3 found that paying attention to observed individual's feelings of pain and including other-race individuals in one's own team for competitions respectively eliminated the RBE by increasing neural responses to pain expressions in other-race faces. Our results indicate that the RBE is not inevitable and that manipulations of both cognitive strategies and intergroup relationships can decrease RBE-related brain activity.

  9. Novel trophic cascades: apex predators enable coexistence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wallach, Arian D; Ripple, William J; Carroll, Scott P

    2015-03-01

    Novel assemblages of native and introduced species characterize a growing proportion of ecosystems worldwide. Some introduced species have contributed to extinctions, even extinction waves, spurring widespread efforts to eradicate or control them. We propose that trophic cascade theory offers insights into why introduced species sometimes become harmful, but in other cases stably coexist with natives and offer net benefits. Large predators commonly limit populations of potentially irruptive prey and mesopredators, both native and introduced. This top-down force influences a wide range of ecosystem processes that often enhance biodiversity. We argue that many species, regardless of their origin or priors, are allies for the retention and restoration of biodiversity in top-down regulated ecosystems.

  10. Evolution of complex life cycles in trophically transmitted helminths. I. Host incorporation and trophic ascent.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parker, G A; Ball, M A; Chubb, J C

    2015-02-01

    Links between parasites and food webs are evolutionarily ancient but dynamic: life history theory provides insights into helminth complex life cycle origins. Most adult helminths benefit by sexual reproduction in vertebrates, often high up food chains, but direct infection is commonly constrained by a trophic vacuum between free-living propagules and definitive hosts. Intermediate hosts fill this vacuum, facilitating transmission to definitive hosts. The central question concerns why sexual reproduction, and sometimes even larval growth, is suppressed in intermediate hosts, favouring growth arrest at larval maturity in intermediate hosts and reproductive suppression until transmission to definitive hosts? Increased longevity and higher growth in definitive hosts can generate selection for larger parasite body size and higher fecundity at sexual maturity. Life cycle length is increased by two evolutionary mechanisms, upward and downward incorporation, allowing simple (one-host) cycles to become complex (multihost). In downward incorporation, an intermediate host is added below the definitive host: models suggest that downward incorporation probably evolves only after ecological or evolutionary perturbations create a trophic vacuum. In upward incorporation, a new definitive host is added above the original definitive host, which subsequently becomes an intermediate host, again maintained by the trophic vacuum: theory suggests that this is plausible even under constant ecological/evolutionary conditions. The final cycle is similar irrespective of its origin (upward or downward). Insights about host incorporation are best gained by linking comparative phylogenetic analyses (describing evolutionary history) with evolutionary models (examining selective forces). Ascent of host trophic levels and evolution of optimal host taxa ranges are discussed. © 2015 European Society For Evolutionary Biology. Journal of Evolutionary Biology © 2015 European Society For Evolutionary

  11. Assessment Of Trophic Status In Bali Strait

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Umi Zakiyah

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available The nutrient content in Banyuwangi coastal environment mostly caused by human activities along the coastal area of Bali strait especially in Banyuwangi surrounding areas. The change of organic element content in waters will directly affect plankton community structure and the aquatic trophic level. The aimed of this research were to analyze the plankton community structure, and to observe the quality of aquatic and determine Bali Strait especially Banyuwangi coastal area trophic level. This research was done in October 2015 at Banyuwangi coastal area. Methods used in this research was descriptive with seawater sampling for water quality analysis of several parameter such as nitrates (NO3, phosphates (PO4, TOM (Total Organic Matter and Chlorophyll-a, meanwhile other parameters were, temperature, pH, Dissolved Oxygen dan salinity from three different depth of three different stations, coastal area of Bangsring, Tandjung Wangi and Muncar. The results for water quality parameters showed that Bangsring coastal area was the most  healthy waters compared to Bangsring and Muncar. Meanwhile, there were tendency that the concentration mostly high in the surface and decrease along with the deeper depth. This condition presumed caused by the ARLINDO current that passed through Bali strait. Phytoplankton identified and calculated consisted of 3 division, namely Chlorophyta, Chrysophyta, and Cyanophyta with total density ranges between 4-2888 ind/ml. The value of diversity index phytoplankton (H’ ranges between 0,3-0,7. Based on the result it can be concluded that Banyuwangi coastal areas were at throphic level of  oligotrophic tended to mesotrophic in northern part and eutrophic especially in Muncar. Thus, it was suggested for the Government to prevent this area becoming more polluted in the future.

  12. Trigeminal Trophic Syndrome – Case Report

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Boštjan Matos

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available 1024x768 Trigeminal trophic syndrome is a rare condition resulting from compulsive self-manipulation of the skin after a peripheral or central injury to the trigeminal system. The classic triad consists of trigeminal anesthesia, facial paresthesias, and crescentric lateral nasal alar erosion and ulceration. Although the symptoms are visibly clear, the diagnosis is not easy to establish. The appearance of the ulcers mimics many other disease entities such as neoplasm, infection, granulomatous disease, vasculitis and factitial dermatitis. Trigeminal trophic syndrome should be considered with a positive neurologic history and when laboratory and biopsy workup is inconclusive. Once diagnosis is confirmed, treatment is complicated and often multidisciplinary. We report a case of a woman who developed a strictly unilateral crescent ulcer of the ala nasi after resection of an statoacoustic neurinoma. A clinician who is faced with a patient with nasal ulceration should consider this diagnosis.     Normal 0 false false false EN-US X-NONE X-NONE /* Style Definitions */ table.MsoNormalTable {mso-style-name:"Table Normal"; mso-tstyle-rowband-size:0; mso-tstyle-colband-size:0; mso-style-noshow:yes; mso-style-priority:99; mso-style-qformat:yes; mso-style-parent:""; mso-padding-alt:0cm 5.4pt 0cm 5.4pt; mso-para-margin:0cm; mso-para-margin-bottom:.0001pt; mso-pagination:widow-orphan; font-size:11.0pt; font-family:"Calibri","sans-serif"; mso-ascii-font-family:Calibri; mso-ascii-theme-font:minor-latin; mso-fareast-font-family:"Times New Roman"; mso-fareast-theme-font:minor-fareast; mso-hansi-font-family:Calibri; mso-hansi-theme-font:minor-latin; mso-bidi-font-family:"Times New Roman"; mso-bidi-theme-font:minor-bidi;}

  13. Reducing aggressive responses to social exclusion using transcranial direct current stimulation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Riva, Paolo; Romero Lauro, Leonor J; DeWall, C Nathan; Chester, David S; Bushman, Brad J

    2015-03-01

    A vast body of research showed that social exclusion can trigger aggression. However, the neural mechanisms involved in regulating aggressive responses to social exclusion are still largely unknown. Transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) modulates the excitability of a target region. Building on studies suggesting that activity in the right ventrolateral pre-frontal cortex (rVLPFC) might aid the regulation or inhibition of social exclusion-related distress, we hypothesized that non-invasive brain polarization through tDCS over the rVLPFC would reduce behavioral aggression following social exclusion. Participants were socially excluded or included while they received tDCS or sham stimulation to the rVLPFC. Next, they received an opportunity to aggress. Excluded participants demonstrated cognitive awareness of their inclusionary status, yet tDCS (but not sham stimulation) reduced their behavioral aggression. Excluded participants who received tDCS stimulation were no more aggressive than included participants. tDCS stimulation did not influence socially included participants' aggression. Our findings provide the first causal test for the role of rVLPFC in modulating aggressive responses to social exclusion. Our findings suggest that modulating activity in a brain area (i.e. the rVLPFC) implicated in self-control and emotion regulation can break the link between social exclusion and aggression.

  14. Larval starvation reduces responsiveness to feeding stimuli and does not affect feeding preferences in a butterfly.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kehl, Tobias; Fischer, Klaus

    2012-07-01

    It is commonly assumed that holometabolic insects such as Lepidoptera rely primarily on larval storage reserves for reproduction. Recent studies though have documented a prominent role of adult-derived carbohydrates for butterfly reproduction. Moreover, a few studies have shown that adult butterflies may also benefit from adult-derived amino acids, at least when larval storage reserves are reduced. Given that in holometabolous insects larval deficiencies are carried over into the adult stage, reduced storage reserves have the potential to modulate adult feeding preferences and responses in order to allow for a successful compensation. We tested this hypothesis here in the fruit-feeding butterfly Bicyclus anynana using larval food stress to manipulate storage reserves. Alcohols (methanol, ethanol, butanol, propanol), sugars (maltose, glucose, fructose, sucrose), and acetic acid acted as feeding stimuli, while butterflies did not respond to other substances such as amino acids, yeast, salts, or vitamins. Contrary to expectations, stressed butterflies showed a weaker response than controls to several feeding stimuli. In preference tests, butterflies preferred sugar solutions containing proline, arginine, glutamic acid, acetic acid, or ethanol over plain sugar solutions, but discriminated against salts. However, there were no general differences among starved and control butterflies. We conclude that larval food-stress does not elicit compensatory feeding behavior such as a stronger preference for amino acids or other essential nutrients in B. anynana. Instead, the stress imposed by a period of starvation yielded negative effects. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. Progesterone-based contraceptives reduce adaptive immune responses and protection against sequential influenza A virus infections.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hall, Olivia J; Nachbagauer, Raffael; Vermillion, Meghan S; Fink, Ashley L; Phuong, Vanessa; Krammer, Florian; Klein, Sabra L

    2017-02-08

    In addition to their intended use, progesterone (P4)-based contraceptives promote anti-inflammatory immune responses, yet their effects on the outcome of infectious diseases, including influenza A virus (IAV), are rarely evaluated. To evaluate their impact on immune responses to sequential IAV infections, adult female mice were treated with placebo or one of two progestins, P4 or levonorgestrel (LNG), and infected with mouse adapted (ma) H1N1 virus. Treatment with P4 or LNG reduced morbidity, but had no effect on pulmonary virus titers, during primary H1N1 infection as compared to placebo treatment. In serum and bronchoalveolar lavage fluid, total anti-IAV IgG and IgA titers and virus neutralizing antibody titers, but not hemagglutinin stalk antibody titers, were lower in progestin-treated mice as compared with placebo-treated mice. Females were challenged six weeks later with either a maH1N1 drift variant (maH1N1dv) or maH3N2 IAV. Protection following infection with the maH1N1dv was similar among all groups. In contrast, following challenge with maH3N2, progestin treatment reduced survival as well as numbers and activity of H1N1- and H3N2-specific memory CD8+ T cells, including tissue resident cells, compared with placebo treatment. In contrast to primary IAV infection, progestin treatment increased neutralizing and IgG antibody titers against both challenge viruses compared with placebo treatment. While the immunomodulatory properties of progestins protected naïve females against severe outcome from IAV infection, it made them more susceptible to secondary challenge with a heterologous IAV, despite improving their antibody responses against a secondary IAV infection. Taken together, the immunomodulatory effects of progestins differentially regulate the outcome of infection depending on exposure history.IMPORTANCE The impact of hormone-based contraceptives on the outcome of infectious diseases outside of the reproductive tract is rarely considered. Using a mouse

  16. A comparison of response cost and differential reinforcement of other behavior to reduce disruptive behavior in a preschool classroom.

    OpenAIRE

    Conyers, Carole; Miltenberger, Raymond; Maki, Amber; Barenz, Rebecca; Jurgens, Mandy; Sailer, Angela; Haugen, Meredith; Kopp, Brandon

    2004-01-01

    This study investigated the effectiveness of response cost and differential reinforcement of other behavior (DRO) in reducing the disruptive behaviors of 25 children in a preschool classroom. Using an alternating treatments design, disruptive behavior was reduced when the participants earned tokens for the absence of disruptive behavior (DRO) or lost tokens for the occurrence of disruptive behavior (response cost). Initially, DRO was more successful in reducing the number of disruptive behavi...

  17. Adrenergic responsiveness is reduced, while baseline cardiac function is preserved in old adult conscious monkeys

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sato, N.; Kiuchi, K.; Shen, Y. T.; Vatner, S. F.; Vatner, D. E.

    1995-01-01

    To examine the physiological deficit to adrenergic stimulation with aging, five younger adult (3 +/- 1 yr old) and nine older adult (17 +/- 1 yr old) healthy monkeys were studied after instrumentation with a left ventricular (LV) pressure gauge, aortic and left atrial catheters, and aortic flow probes to measure cardiac output directly. There were no significant changes in baseline hemodynamics in conscious older monkeys. For example, an index of contractility, the first derivative of LV pressure (LV dP/dt) was similar (3,191 +/- 240, young vs. 3,225 +/- 71 mmHg/s, old) as well as in isovolumic relaxation, tau (24.3 +/- 1.7 ms, young vs. 23.0 +/- 1.0 ms, old) was similar. However, inotropic, lusitropic, and chronotropic responses to isoproterenol (Iso; 0.1 micrograms/kg), norepinephrine (NE; 0.4 micrograms/kg), and forskolin (For; 75 nmol/kg) were significantly (P monkeys. For example. Iso increased LV dP/dt by by 146 +/- 14% in younger monkeys and by only 70 +/- 5% in older monkeys. Iso also reduced tau more in younger monkeys (-28 +/- 7%) compared with older monkeys (-13 +/- 3%). Furthermore, peripheral vascular responsiveness to Iso, NE, For, and phenylephrine (PE; 5 micrograms/kg) was significantly (P monkeys. For example, phenylephrine (5 micrograms/kg) increased total peripheral resistence by 69 +/- 4% in younger monkeys and by only 45 +/- 3% in older monkeys. Thus in older monkeys without associated cardiovascular disease, baseline hemodynamics are preserved, but adrenergic receptor responsiveness is reduced systemically, not just in the heart.

  18. Cardiac Resynchronization Therapy Reduces Metaboreflex Contribution to the Ventilatory Response in Heart Failure Population

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jérémie Jaussaud

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Background. Metaboreflex overactivation has been proprosed to explain exaggerated hyperventilation in heart failure population. We investigated the metaboreflex activation after cardiac resynchronization therapy (CRT. Methods. 10 heart failure patients (mean left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF 27±4% schedulded for CRT implantation were prospectively studied. At baseline and after 6 month follow up two maximal cardiopulmonary exercise tests with and without regional circulatory occlusion (RCO during recovery were performed. RCO was achieved by inflation of bilateral upper thigh tourniquets 30 mmHg above peak systolic blood pressure during 3 minutes after peak exercise. Metaboreflex contribution to the ventilatory response was assessed as the difference in ventilatory data at the third minute during recovery between the two tests (Δ. Results. Patients had enhanced VE/VCO2 slope (40±9 and an evident metaboreflex contribution to the high ventilatory response (ΔVE: 3±4 L/min; =0.05, ΔRR: 4.5±4/min; =0.003 and ΔVE/VCO2: 5.5±4; =0.007. 6 months after CRT implantation, NYHA class, LVEF, peak VO2 and VE/VCO2 were significantly improved (1.4±0.5; <0.001, 42±7%; <0.001, 16.5±3 mL/kg/min; =0.003; 33±10; =0.01. Metaboreflex contribution to VE, RR, and VE/VCO2 was reduced compared with baseline (=0.08, =0.01 and =0.4 resp.. Conclusion. 6 months after CRT metaboreflex contribution to the ventilatory response is reduced.

  19. Determination of fish trophic levels in an estuarine system

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pasquaud, S.; Pillet, M.; David, V.; Sautour, B.; Elie, P.

    2010-01-01

    The concept of trophic level is particularly relevant in order to improve knowledge of the structure and the functioning of an ecosystem. A precise estimation of fish trophic levels based on nitrogen isotopic signatures in environments as complex and fluctuant as estuaries requires a good description of the pelagic and benthic trophic chains and a knowledge of organic matter sources at the bottom. In this study these points are considered in the case of the Gironde estuary (south west France, Europe). To obtain a good picture of the food web, fish stomach content analyses and a bibliographic synthesis of the prey feeding ecology were carried out. Fish trophic levels were calculated from these results and δ 15N data. The feeding link investigation enabled us to identify qualitatively and quantitatively the different preys consumed by each fish group studied, to distinguish the prey feeding on benthos from those feeding on pelagos and to characterize the different nutritive pools at the base of the system. Among the species studied, only Liza ramada and the flatfish ( Platichthys flesus and Solea solea) depend mainly on benthic trophic compartments. All the other fish groups depend on several trophic (benthic and/or pelagic) sources. These results enabled us to correct the calculation of fish trophic levels which are coherent with their feeding ecology data obtained from the nitrogen isotopic integrative period. The present work shows that trophic positions are linked with the feeding ecology of fish species and vary according to individual size. Ecological data also allow the correction of the isotopic data by eliminating absurd results and showing the complementarity of the two methods. This work is the first to consider source variability in the fish food web. This is an indispensable step for trophic studies in a dynamic environment. The investigation of matter fluxes and recycling processes at the food web base would provide a useful improvement in future

  20. Reduced Prefrontal Cortex Hemodynamic Response in Adults with Methamphetamine Induced Psychosis: Relevance for Impulsivity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yamamuro, Kazuhiko; Kimoto, Sohei; Iida, Junzo; Kishimoto, Naoko; Nakanishi, Yoko; Tanaka, Shohei; Ota, Toyosaku; Makinodan, Manabu; Kishimoto, Toshifumi

    2016-01-01

    Patients with methamphetamine abuse/dependence often exhibit high levels of impulsivity, which may be associated with the structural abnormalities and functional hypoactivities observed in the frontal cortex of these subjects. Although near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) is a simple and non-invasive method for characterizing the clinical features of various psychiatric illnesses, few studies have used NIRS to directly investigate the association between prefrontal cortical activity and inhibitory control in patients with methamphetamine-induced psychosis (MAP). Using a 24-channel NIRS system, we compared hemodynamic responses during the Stroop color-word task in 14 patients with MAP and 21 healthy controls matched for age, sex and premorbid IQ. In addition, we used the Barrett Impulsivity Scale-11 (BIS-11) to assess impulsivity between subject groups. The MAP group exhibited significantly less activation in the anterior and frontopolar prefrontal cortex accompanied by lower Stroop color-word task performance, compared with controls. Moreover, BIS-11 scores were significantly higher in the MAP group, and were negatively correlated with the hemodynamic responses in prefrontal cortex. Our data suggest that reduced hemodynamic responses in the prefrontal cortex might reflect higher levels of impulsivity in patients with MAP, providing new insights into disrupted inhibitory control observed in MAP.

  1. Activated systemic inflammatory response at diagnosis reduces lymph node count in colonic carcinoma

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Rory P Kennelly; Brenda Murphy; John O Larkin; Brian J Mehigan; Paul H McCormick

    2016-01-01

    AIM: To investigate a link between lymph node yield and systemic inflammatory response in colon cancer. METHODS: A prospectively maintained database was interrogated. All patients undergoing curative colonic resection were included. Neutrophil lymphocyte ratio(NLR) and albumin were used as markers of SIR. In keeping with previously studies, NLR ≥ 4, albumin < 35 was used as cut off points for SIR. Statistical analysis was performed using 2 sample t-test and χ~2 tests where appropriate.RESULTS: Three hundred and two patients were included for analysis. One hundred and ninety-five patients had NLR < 4 and 107 had NLR ≥ 4. There was no difference in age or sex between groups. Patients with NLR of ≥ 4 had lower mean lymph node yields than patients with NLR < 4 [17.6 ± 7.1 vs 19.2 ± 7.9(P = 0.036)]. More patients with an elevated NLR had node positive disease and an increased lymph node ratio(≥ 0.25, P = 0.044). CONCLUSION: Prognosis in colon cancer is intimately linked to the patient’s immune response. Assuming standardised surgical technique and sub specialty pathology, lymph node count is reduced when systemic inflammatory response is activated.

  2. The post illumination pupil response is reduced in seasonal affective disorder

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roecklein, Kathryn; Wong, Patricia; Ernecoff, Natalie; Miller, Megan; Donofry, Shannon; Kamarck, Marissa; Wood-Vasey, W. Michael; Franzen, Peter

    2013-01-01

    Individuals with seasonal affective disorder (SAD) may have a decreased retinal sensitivity in the non-image forming light-input pathway. We examined the post illumination pupil response (PIPR) among individuals with SAD and healthy controls to identify possible differences in the melanopsin signaling pathway. We also investigated whether melanopsin gene (OPN4) variations would predict variability in the PIPR. Fifteen SAD and 15 control participants (80% women, mean age 36.7 years, SD = 14.5) were assessed in the fall/winter. Participants were diagnosed based on DSM-IV-TR criteria. Infrared pupillometry was used to measure pupil diameter prior to, during, and after red and blue stimuli. In response to blue light, the SAD group had a reduced PIPR and a lower PIPR percent change relative to controls. The PIPR after the blue stimulus also varied on the basis of OPN4 I394T genotype, but not OPN4 P10L genotype. These findings may indicate that individuals with SAD have a less sensitive light input pathway as measured by the PIPR, leading to differences in neurobiological and behavioral responses such as alertness, circadian photoentrainment, and melatonin release. In addition, this sensitivity may vary based on sequence variations in OPN4, although a larger sample and replication is needed. PMID:23809464

  3. Embryo Microinjection of Selenomethionine Reduces Hatchability and Modifies Oxidant Responsive Gene Expression in Zebrafish

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thomas, J. K.; Janz, D. M.

    2016-05-01

    In previous studies we demonstrated that exposure to selenomethionine (SeMet) causes developmental toxicities in zebrafish (Danio rerio). The objectives of this study were to establish a dose-response relationship for developmental toxicities in zebrafish after embryo microinjection of Se (8, 16 or 32 μg/g dry mass of eggs) in the form of SeMet, and to investigate potential underlying mechanism(s) of SeMet-induced developmental toxicities. A dose-dependent increase in frequencies of mortality and total deformities, and reduced hatchability were observed in zebrafish exposed to excess Se via embryo microinjection. The egg Se concentration causing 20% mortality was then used to investigate transcript abundance of proteins involved in antioxidant protection and methylation. Excess Se exposure modified gene expression of oxidant-responsive transcription factors (nuclear factor erythroid 2-related factor nrf2a and nrf2b), and enzymes involved in cellular methylation (methionine adenosyltransferase mat1a and mat2ab) in zebrafish larvae. Notably, excess Se exposure up-regulated transcript abundance of aryl hydrocarbon receptor 2 (ahr2), a signalling pathway involved in the toxicity of dioxin-related compounds. Our findings suggest that oxidative stress or modification of methylation, or a combination of these mechanisms, might be responsible for Se-induced developmental toxicities in fishes.

  4. Reduced Prefrontal Cortex Hemodynamic Response in Adults with Methamphetamine Induced Psychosis: Relevance for Impulsivity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kazuhiko Yamamuro

    Full Text Available Patients with methamphetamine abuse/dependence often exhibit high levels of impulsivity, which may be associated with the structural abnormalities and functional hypoactivities observed in the frontal cortex of these subjects. Although near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS is a simple and non-invasive method for characterizing the clinical features of various psychiatric illnesses, few studies have used NIRS to directly investigate the association between prefrontal cortical activity and inhibitory control in patients with methamphetamine-induced psychosis (MAP. Using a 24-channel NIRS system, we compared hemodynamic responses during the Stroop color-word task in 14 patients with MAP and 21 healthy controls matched for age, sex and premorbid IQ. In addition, we used the Barrett Impulsivity Scale-11 (BIS-11 to assess impulsivity between subject groups. The MAP group exhibited significantly less activation in the anterior and frontopolar prefrontal cortex accompanied by lower Stroop color-word task performance, compared with controls. Moreover, BIS-11 scores were significantly higher in the MAP group, and were negatively correlated with the hemodynamic responses in prefrontal cortex. Our data suggest that reduced hemodynamic responses in the prefrontal cortex might reflect higher levels of impulsivity in patients with MAP, providing new insights into disrupted inhibitory control observed in MAP.

  5. Human Responding on Random-Interval Schedules of Response-Cost Punishment: The Role of Reduced Reinforcement Density

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pietras, Cynthia J.; Brandt, Andrew E.; Searcy, Gabriel D.

    2010-01-01

    An experiment with adult humans investigated the effects of response-contingent money loss (response-cost punishment) on monetary-reinforced responding. A yoked-control procedure was used to separate the effects on responding of the response-cost contingency from the effects of reduced reinforcement density. Eight adults pressed buttons for money…

  6. Damped trophic cascades driven by fishing in model marine ecosystems

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Andersen, Ken Haste; Pedersen, Martin

    2010-01-01

    that fishing does not change the overall slope of the size spectrum, but depletes the largest individuals and induces trophic cascades. A trophic cascade can propagate both up and down in trophic levels driven by a combination of changes in predation mortality and food limitation. The cascade is damped...... cascade triggered by the removal of top predators. Here we use a novel size- and trait-based model to explore how marine ecosystems might react to perturbations from different types of fishing pressure. The model explicitly resolves the whole life history of fish, from larvae to adults. The results show...

  7. Is 1/f sound more effective than simple resting in reducing stress response?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oh, Eun-Joo; Cho, Il-Young; Park, Soon-Kwon

    2014-01-01

    It has been previously demonstrated that listening to 1/f sound effectively reduces stress. However, these findings have been inconsistent and further study on the relationship between 1/f sound and the stress response is consequently necessary. The present study examined whether sound with 1/f properties (1/f sound) affects stress-induced electroencephalogram (EEG) changes. Twenty-six subjects who voluntarily participated in the study were randomly assigned to the experimental or control group. Data from four participants were excluded because of EEG artifacts. A mental arithmetic task was used as a stressor. Participants in the experiment group listened to 1/f sound for 5 minutes and 33 seconds, while participants in the control group sat quietly for the same duration. EEG recordings were obtained at various points throughout the experiment. After the experiment, participants completed a questionnaire on the affective impact of the 1/f sound. The results indicated that the mental arithmetic task effectively induced a stress response measurable by EEG. Relative theta power at all electrode sites was significantly lower than baseline in both the control and experimental group. Relative alpha power was significantly lower, and relative beta power was significantly higher in the T3 and T4 areas. Secondly, 1/f sound and simple resting affected task-associated EEG changes in a similar manner. Finally, participants reported in the questionnaire that they experienced a positive feeling in response to the 1/f sound. Our results suggest that a commercialized 1/f sound product is not more effective than simple resting in alleviating the physiological stress response.

  8. Reduced emotional and corticosterone responses to stress in mu-opioid receptor knockout mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ide, Soichiro; Sora, Ichiro; Ikeda, Kazutaka; Minami, Masabumi; Uhl, George R; Ishihara, Kumatoshi

    2010-01-01

    The detailed mechanisms of emotional modulation in the nervous system by opioids remain to be elucidated, although the opioid system is well known to play important roles in the mechanisms of analgesia and drug dependence. In the present study, we conducted behavioral tests of anxiety and depression and measured corticosterone concentrations in both male and female mu-opioid receptor knockout (MOP-KO) mice to reveal the involvement of mu-opioid receptors in stress-induced emotional responses. MOP-KO mice entered more and spent more time in the open arms of the elevated plus maze compared with wild-type mice. MOP-KO mice also displayed significantly decreased immobility in a 15 min tail-suspension test compared with wild-type mice. Similarly, MOP-KO mice exhibited significantly decreased immobility on days 2, 3, and 4 in a 6 min forced swim test conducted for 5 consecutive days. The increase in plasma corticosterone concentration induced by tail-suspension, repeated forced swim, or restraint stress was reduced in MOP-KO mice compared with wild-type mice. Corticosterone levels were not different between wild-type and MOP-KO mice before stress exposure. In contrast, although female mice tended to exhibit fewer anxiety-like responses in the tail-suspension test in both genotypes, no significant gender differences were observed in stress-induced emotional responses. These results suggest that MOPs play an important facilitatory role in emotional responses to stress, including anxiety- and depression-like behavior and corticosterone levels.

  9. Trophic factor-induced excitatory synaptogenesis involves postsynaptic modulation of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Woodin, Melanie A; Munno, David W; Syed, Naweed I

    2002-01-15

    Neurotrophic factors have well established roles in neuronal development, although their precise involvement in synapse formation and plasticity is yet to be fully determined. Using soma-soma synapses between identified Lymnaea neurons, we have shown recently that trophic factors are required for excitatory but not inhibitory synapse formation. However, neither the precise site (presynaptic versus postsynaptic cell) nor the underlying mechanisms have yet been defined. In the present study, synapse formation between the presynaptic cell visceral dorsal 4 (VD4) and its postsynaptic partner right pedal dorsal 1 (RPeD1) was examined to define the cellular mechanisms mediating trophic factor-induced excitatory synaptogenesis in cell culture. When paired in a soma-soma configuration in the presence of defined media (DM, nonproteinacious), mutually inhibitory synapses were appropriately reconstructed between VD4 and RPeD1. However, when cells were paired in the presence of increasing concentrations of Lymnaea brain-conditioned medium (CM), a biphasic synapse (initial excitatory synaptic component followed by inhibition) developed. The CM-induced excitatory synapse formation required trophic factor-mediated activation of receptor tyrosine kinases in the postsynaptic cell, RPeD1, and a concomitant modulation of existing postsynaptic nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). Specifically, when RPeD1 was isolated in DM, exogenously applied ACh induced a hyperpolarizing response that was sensitive to the AChR antagonist methyllycaconitine (MLA). In contrast, a single RPeD1 isolated in CM exhibited a biphasic response to exogenously applied ACh. The initial depolarizing phase of the biphasic response was sensitive to both mecamylamine and hexamethonium chloride, whereas the hyperpolarizing phase was blocked by MLA. In soma-soma-paired neurons, the VD4-induced synaptic responses in RPeD1 were sensitive to the cholinergic antagonists in a concentration range similar to that

  10. Science for a wilder Anthropocene : Synthesis and future directions for trophic rewilding research

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Svenning, Jens Christian; Pedersen, Pil B M; Donlan, C. Josh; Ejrnæs, Rasmus; Faurby, Søren; Galetti, Mauro; Hansen, Dennis M.; Sandel, Brody; Sandom, Christopher J.; Terborgh, John W.; Vera, Frans W M

    2016-01-01

    Trophic rewilding is an ecological restoration strategy that uses species introductions to restore top-down trophic interactions and associated trophic cascades to promote self-regulating biodiverse ecosystems. Given the importance of large animals in trophic cascades and their widespread losses and

  11. Science for a wilder Anthropocene : Synthesis and future directions for trophic rewilding research

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Svenning, Jens Christian; Pedersen, Pil B M; Donlan, C. Josh; Ejrnæs, Rasmus; Faurby, Søren; Galetti, Mauro; Hansen, Dennis M.; Sandel, Brody; Sandom, Christopher J.; Terborgh, John W.; Vera, Frans W M

    2016-01-01

    Trophic rewilding is an ecological restoration strategy that uses species introductions to restore top-down trophic interactions and associated trophic cascades to promote self-regulating biodiverse ecosystems. Given the importance of large animals in trophic cascades and their widespread losses and

  12. Extremism reduces conflict arousal and increases values affirmation in response to meaning violations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sleegers, Willem W A; Proulx, Travis; van Beest, Ilja

    2015-05-01

    In the social psychological threat-compensation literature, there is an apparent contradiction whereby relatively extreme beliefs both decrease markers of physiological arousal following meaning violations, and increase the values affirmation behaviors understood as a palliative responses to this arousal. We hypothesize that this is due to the differential impact of measuring extremism on behavioral inhibition and approach systems following meaning violations, whereby extremism both reduces markers of conflict arousal (BIS) and increases values affirmation (BAS) unrelated to this initial arousal. Using pupil dilation as a proxy for immediate conflict arousal, we found that the same meaning violation (anomalous playing cards) evoked greater pupil dilation, and that this pupillary reaction was diminished in participants who earlier reported extreme beliefs. We also found that reporting extreme beliefs was associated with greater affirmation of an unrelated meaning framework, where this affirmation was unrelated to physiological markers of conflict arousal. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  13. Smart Property of Homogeneous Electrorheological Fluid and Its Application in Reducing Seismic Responses of Engineering Structures

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2002-01-01

    The smart properties of homogeneous electrorheological fluid (HERF) containing side-chain type liquid crystalline polymer were studied and an actual HERF damper with an adjustable viscosity was produced.A mechanical model of the HERF smart damper was established on the basis of experiment and theoretical analysis.Then a controlled equation of SDOF structure by HERF damper was derived and a semi-active control strategy based on optimal sliding displacement of damper was presented.The simulation results for a single story frame structure indicate that HERF,which may avoid some defects of common particles-suspended ER fluids,is an excellent smart material with better stability.Using the semi-active control strategy presented,HERF smart damper controlled could effectively reduce seismic responses of structures and keeps the control stable at all times.

  14. Actin-myosin contractility is responsible for the reduced viability of dissociated human embryonic stem cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Guokai; Hou, Zhonggang; Gulbranson, Daniel R; Thomson, James A

    2010-08-06

    Human ESCs are the pluripotent precursor of the three embryonic germ layers. Human ESCs exhibit basal-apical polarity, junctional complexes, integrin-dependent matrix adhesion, and E-cadherin-dependent cell-cell adhesion, all characteristics shared by the epiblast epithelium of the intact mammalian embryo. After disruption of epithelial structures, programmed cell death is commonly observed. If individualized human ESCs are prevented from reattaching and forming colonies, their viability is significantly reduced. Here, we show that actin-myosin contraction is a critical effector of the cell death response to human ESC dissociation. Inhibition of myosin heavy chain ATPase, downregulation of myosin heavy chain, and downregulation of myosin light chain all increase survival and cloning efficiency of individualized human ESCs. ROCK inhibition decreases phosphorylation of myosin light chain, suggesting that inhibition of actin-myosin contraction is also the mechanism through which ROCK inhibitors increase cloning efficiency of human ESCs.

  15. Amygdalin analogues inhibit IFN-γ signalling and reduce the inflammatory response in human epidermal keratinocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paoletti, Iole; De Gregorio, Vincenza; Baroni, Adone; Tufano, Maria Antonietta; Donnarumma, Giovanna; Perez, Juan Jesus

    2013-12-01

    Peptide T (PT), an octapeptide fragment located in the V2 region of the HIV-1 gp120-coating protein, appears to be beneficial in the treatment of psoriasis. Our previous investigations suggest that keratinocytes play a key role in conditioning the therapeutic effects of PT in psoriasis. The aim of this study was to explore the effects of PT and the peptidomimetic natural products, Dhurrin and Prunasin, on the expression of the IL-6, IL-8, IL-23, HSP70 and ICAM-1 on IFN-γ and TNF-α-NHEK activated cells. Moreover, we analysed the interference of PT and its analogues through STAT-3 activation. Our results show that the analogues tested exhibit the beneficial biological effects of PT, suggesting the primary role of keratinocytes upon which PT and the peptidomimetics act directly, by reducing proinflammatory responses. Its reduction appears to be important for therapeutic approach in psoriasis pathogenesis.

  16. Stochastic coordination of multiple actuators reduces latency and improves chemotactic response in bacteria.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sneddon, Michael W; Pontius, William; Emonet, Thierry

    2012-01-17

    Individual neuronal, signal transduction, and regulatory pathways often control multiple stochastic downstream actuators, which raises the question of how coordinated response to a single input can be achieved when individual actuators fluctuate independently. In Escherichia coli, the bacterial chemotaxis pathway controls the activity of multiple flagellar motors to generate the run-and-tumble motion of the cell. High-resolution microscopy experiments have identified the key conformational changes adopted by individual flagella during this process. By incorporating these observations into a stochastic model of the flagellar bundle, we demonstrate that the presence of multiple motors imposes a trade-off on chemotactic performance. Multiple motors reduce the latency of the response below the time scale of the stochastic switching of a single motor, which improves performance on steep gradients of attractants. However, the uncoordinated switching of multiple motors interrupts and shortens cell runs, which thereby reduces signal detection and performance on shallow gradients. Remarkably, when slow fluctuations generated by the adaptation mechanism of the chemotaxis system are incorporated in the model at levels measured in experiments, the chemotactic sensitivity and performance in shallow gradients is partially restored with marginal effects for steep gradients. The noise is beneficial because it simultaneously generates long events in the statistics of individual motors and coordinates the motors to generate a long tail in the run length distribution of the cell. Occasional long runs are known to enhance exploration of random walkers. Here we show that they have the additional benefit of enhancing the sensitivity of the bacterium to very shallow gradients.

  17. Repeated intranasal TLR7 stimulation reduces allergen responsiveness in allergic rhinitis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Greiff Lennart

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Interactions between Th1 and Th2 immune responses are of importance to the onset and development of allergic disorders. A Toll-like receptor 7 agonist such as AZD8848 may have potential as a treatment for allergic airway disease by skewing the immune system away from a Th2 profile. Objective To evaluate the efficacy and safety of intranasal AZD8848. Methods In a placebo-controlled single ascending dose study, AZD8848 (0.3-600 μg was given intranasally to 48 healthy subjects and 12 patients with allergic rhinitis (NCT00688779. In a placebo-controlled repeat challenge/treatment study, AZD8848 (30 and 60 μg was given once weekly for five weeks to 74 patients with allergic rhinitis out of season: starting 24 hours after the final dose, daily allergen challenges were given for seven days (NCT00770003. Safety, tolerability, pharmacokinetics, and biomarkers were monitored. During the allergen challenge series, nasal symptoms and lavage fluid levels of tryptase and α2-macroglobulin, reflecting mast cell activity and plasma exudation, were monitored. Results AZD8848 produced reversible blood lymphocyte reductions and dose-dependent flu-like symptoms: 30–100 μg produced consistent yet tolerable effects. Plasma interleukin-1 receptor antagonist was elevated after administration of AZD8848, reflecting interferon production secondary to TLR7 stimulation. At repeat challenge/treatment, AZD8848 reduced nasal symptoms recorded ten minutes after allergen challenge up to eight days after the final dose. Tryptase and α2-macroglobulin were also reduced by AZD8848. Conclusions Repeated intranasal stimulation of Toll-like receptor 7 by AZD8848 was safe and produced a sustained reduction in the responsiveness to allergen in allergic rhinitis. Trial registration NCT00688779 and NCT00770003 as indicated above.

  18. Plant responses to increasing CO2 reduce estimates of climate impacts on drought severity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Swann, Abigail L. S.; Hoffman, Forrest M.; Koven, Charles D.; Randerson, James T.

    2016-09-01

    Rising atmospheric CO2 will make Earth warmer, and many studies have inferred that this warming will cause droughts to become more widespread and severe. However, rising atmospheric CO2 also modifies stomatal conductance and plant water use, processes that are often are overlooked in impact analysis. We find that plant physiological responses to CO2 reduce predictions of future drought stress, and that this reduction is captured by using plant-centric rather than atmosphere-centric metrics from Earth system models (ESMs). The atmosphere-centric Palmer Drought Severity Index predicts future increases in drought stress for more than 70% of global land area. This area drops to 37% with the use of precipitation minus evapotranspiration (P-E), a measure that represents the water flux available to downstream ecosystems and humans. The two metrics yield consistent estimates of increasing stress in regions where precipitation decreases are more robust (southern North America, northeastern South America, and southern Europe). The metrics produce diverging estimates elsewhere, with P-E predicting decreasing stress across temperate Asia and central Africa. The differing sensitivity of drought metrics to radiative and physiological aspects of increasing CO2 partly explains the divergent estimates of future drought reported in recent studies. Further, use of ESM output in offline models may double-count plant feedbacks on relative humidity and other surface variables, leading to overestimates of future stress. The use of drought metrics that account for the response of plant transpiration to changing CO2, including direct use of P-E and soil moisture from ESMs, is needed to reduce uncertainties in future assessment.

  19. Sulforaphane reduces molecular response to hypoxia in ovarian tumor cells independently of their resistance to chemotherapy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pastorek, Michal; Simko, Veronika; Takacova, Martina; Barathova, Monika; Bartosova, Maria; Hunakova, Luba; Sedlakova, Olga; Hudecova, Sona; Krizanova, Olga; Dequiedt, Franck; Pastorekova, Silvia; Sedlak, Jan

    2015-07-01

    One of the recently emerging anticancer strategies is the use of natural dietary compounds, such as sulforaphane, a cancer-chemopreventive isothiocyanate found in broccoli. Based on the growing evidence, sulforaphane acts through molecular mechanisms that interfere with multiple oncogenic pathways in diverse tumor cell types. Herein, we investigated the anticancer effects of bioavailable concentrations of sulforaphane in ovarian carcinoma cell line A2780 and its two derivatives, adriamycin-resistant A2780/ADR and cisplatin-resistant A2780/CP cell lines. Since tumor microenvironment is characterized by reduced oxygenation that induces aggressive tumor phenotype (such as increased invasiveness and resistance to chemotherapy), we evaluated the effects of sulforaphane in ovarian cancer cells exposed to hypoxia (2% O2). Using the cell-based reporter assay, we identified several oncogenic pathways modulated by sulforaphane in hypoxia by activating anticancer responses (p53, ARE, IRF-1, Pax-6 and XRE) and suppressing responses supporting tumor progression (AP-1 and HIF-1). We further showed that sulforaphane decreases the level of HIF-1α protein without affecting its transcription and stability. It can also diminish transcription and protein level of the HIF-1 target, CA IX, which protects tumor cells from hypoxia-induced pH imbalance and facilitates their migration/invasion. Accordingly, sulforaphane treatment leads to diminished pH regulation and reduced migration of ovarian carcinoma cells. These effects occur in all three ovarian cell lines suggesting that sulforaphane can overcome the chemoresistance of cancer cells. This offers a path potentially exploitable in sensitizing resistant cancer cells to therapy, and opens a window for the combined treatments of sulforaphane either with conventional chemotherapy, natural compounds, or with other small molecules.

  20. The biogeography of trophic cascades on US oyster reefs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kimbro, David L; Byers, James E; Grabowski, Jonathan H; Hughes, A Randall; Piehler, Michael F

    2014-07-01

    Predators can indirectly benefit prey populations by suppressing mid-trophic level consumers, but often the strength and outcome of trophic cascades are uncertain. We manipulated oyster reef communities to test the generality of potential causal factors across a 1000-km region. Densities of oyster consumers were weakly influenced by predators at all sites. In contrast, consumer foraging behaviour in the presence of predators varied considerably, and these behavioural effects altered the trophic cascade across space. Variability in the behavioural cascade was linked to regional gradients in oyster recruitment to and sediment accumulation on reefs. Specifically, asynchronous gradients in these factors influenced whether the benefits of suppressed consumer foraging on oyster recruits exceeded costs of sediment accumulation resulting from decreased consumer activity. Thus, although predation on consumers remains consistent, predator influences on behaviour do not; rather, they interact with environmental gradients to cause biogeographic variability in the net strength of trophic cascades.

  1. Aspects of the trophic ecology of Liza falcipinnis (Valenciennes 1836)

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Aspects of the trophic ecology of Liza falcipinnis (Valenciennes 1836) (Pisces: ... From the index of relative importance (IRI), L. falcipinnis fed primarily on diatoms, ... algae and blue-green algae while free living nematodes, macrophyte matter, ...

  2. Trophic transfer of metal-based nanoparticles in aquatic environments

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Tangaa, Stine Rosendal; Selck, Henriette; Winther-Nielsen, Margrethe

    2016-01-01

    environment where they have been shown to be taken up by a variety of species. Therefore, there is a possibility that Me-ENPs will enter and pass through aquatic food webs, but research on this topic is limited. In this tutorial review, we discuss the factors contributing to trophic transfer of Me......-ENPs, and where this information is scarce, we utilize the existing literature on aqueous metal trophic transfer as a potential starting point for greater mechanistic insight and for setting directions for future studies. We identify four key factors affecting trophic transfer of Me-ENPs: (1) environmental...... transformations of Me-ENPs, (2) uptake and accumulation in prey organisms, (3) internal fate and localization in the prey, and (4) digestive physiology of the predator. Whilst much research has been conducted on the first two of these factors, key knowledge gaps exist in our understanding of how Me-ENP trophic...

  3. Trophic role of Protozooplankton in northern marine ecosystems

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Riisgaard, Karen

    Protozooplankton are the major grazers on phytoplankton in the global ocean, but many questions related to their trophic role remain unanswered in particular for northern marine ecosystems. In the present thesis, protozooplankton communities were evaluated with special emphasis on factors...

  4. From neurons to epidemics: How trophic coherence affects spreading processes

    CERN Document Server

    Klaise, Janis

    2016-01-01

    Trophic coherence, a measure of the extent to which the nodes of a directed network are organised in levels, has recently been shown to be closely related to many structural and dynamical aspects of complex systems, including graph eigenspectra, the prevalence or absence of feed-back cycles, and linear stability. Furthermore, non-trivial trophic structures have been observed in networks of neurons, species, genes, metabolites, cellular signalling, concatenated words, P2P users, and world trade. Here we consider two simple yet apparently quite different dynamical models -- one a Susceptible-Infected-Susceptible (SIS) epidemic model adapted to include complex contagion, the other an Amari-Hopfield neural network -- and show that in both cases the related spreading processes are modulated in similar ways by the trophic coherence of the underlying networks. To do this, we propose a network assembly model which can generate structures with tunable trophic coherence, limiting in either perfectly stratified networks...

  5. Physiological responses to ocean acidification and warming synergistically reduce condition of the common cockle Cerastoderma edule.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ong, E Z; Briffa, M; Moens, T; Van Colen, C

    2017-09-01

    The combined effect of ocean acidification and warming on the common cockle Cerastoderma edule was investigated in a fully crossed laboratory experiment. Survival of the examined adult organisms remained high and was not affected by elevated temperature (+3 °C) or lowered pH (-0.3 units). However, the morphometric condition index of the cockles incubated under high pCO2 conditions (i.e. combined warming and acidification) was significantly reduced after six weeks of incubation. Respiration rates increased significantly under low pH, with highest rates measured under combined warm and low pH conditions. Calcification decreased significantly under low pH while clearance rates increased significantly under warm conditions and were generally lower in low pH treatments. The observed physiological responses suggest that the reduced food intake under hypercapnia is insufficient to support the higher energy requirements to compensate for the higher costs for basal maintenance and growth in future high pCO2 waters. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  6. Optimization of Reducing Sugar Production from Manihot glaziovii Starch Using Response Surface Methodology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Abdi Hanra Sebayang

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Bioethanol is known as a viable alternative fuel to solve both energy and environmental crises. This study used response surface methodology based on the Box-Behnken experimental design to obtain the optimum conditions for and quality of bioethanol production. Enzymatic hydrolysis optimization was performed with selected hydrolysis parameters, including substrate loading, stroke speed, α-amylase concentration and amyloglucosidase concentration. From the experiment, the resulting optimum conditions are 23.88% (w/v substrate loading, 109.43 U/g α-amylase concentration, 65.44 U/mL amyloglucosidase concentration and 74.87 rpm stroke speed, which yielded 196.23 g/L reducing sugar. The fermentation process was also carried out, with a production value of 0.45 g ethanol/g reducing sugar, which is equivalent to 88.61% of ethanol yield after fermentation by using Saccharomyces cerevisiae (S. cerevisiae. The physical and chemical properties of the produced ethanol are within the specifications of the ASTM D4806 standard. The good quality of ethanol produced from this study indicates that Manihot glaziovii (M. glaziovii has great potential as bioethanol feedstock.

  7. Acidic mist reduces foliar membrane-associated calcium and impairs stomatal responsiveness in red spruce

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Borer, C. H.; DeHayes, D. H. [University of Vermont, Rubinstein School of Environment and Natural Resources, Burlington, VT (United States); Schaberg, P. G. [USDA Forest Service, Northeastern Research Station, South Burlington, VT (United States)

    2005-06-01

    The possibility of impairment of stomatal responsiveness due to acidic mist-induced depletion of foliar membrane calcium (mCa) was investigated by exposing red spruce seedlings to either pH 3.0 or pH 5.0 mist treatments for one growing season. Foliar nutrition was assessed following each treatment, and declines in stomatal conductance and net photosynthesis were measured on current year shoots following stem excision. Seedlings subjected to pH 3.0 acidic mist treatment had reduced mCa, and exhibited impaired stomatal function, including a smaller maximum aperture, slower closure, increased lag time between stomatal closure and photosynthetic decline following experimental water stress, relative to seedling treated with pH 5.0 acidic mist. The evidence supports the hypothesis that anthropogenetically caused depletion of mCa may disrupt physiological processes that depend on foliar Ca, in the process reducing the plants ability to respond adaptively to environmental stresses. 69 refs., 1 tab., 1 fig.

  8. Presence of a dog reduces subjective but not physiological stress responses to an analogue trauma

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Johanna eLass-Hennemann

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available Dogs are known to have stress and anxiety reducing effects. Several studies have shown that dogs are able to calm people during cognitive and performance stressors. Recently, therapy dogs have been proposed as a treatment adjunct for PTSD patients. In this study we aimed to investigate, whether dogs also have anxiety- and stress reducing effect during traumatic stressors. 80 healthy female participants were randomly assigned to one of 4 conditions. They were exposed to a traumatic film clip (trauma-film-paradigm. For one group of participants a friendly dog was present during the film, one group of participants was accompanied by a friendly human, another control group watched the film with a toy animal and the last group watched the film clip alone. Participants that were accompanied by the dog during the film reported lower anxiety ratings and less negative affect after the film clip as compared to the toy dog group and the alone group. Results of the dog group were comparable to the group that was accompanied by a friendly human. There were no differences in physiological stress responses between the four conditions. Our results show that dogs are able to lessen subjectively experienced stress and anxiety during a traumatic stress situation. This effect was comparable to that of social support by a friendly person. Implications for PTSD patients are discussed.

  9. Sida cordifolia leaf extract reduces the orofacial nociceptive response in mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bonjardim, L R; Silva, A M; Oliveira, M G B; Guimarães, A G; Antoniolli, A R; Santana, M F; Serafini, M R; Santos, R C; Araújo, A A S; Estevam, C S; Santos, M R V; Lyra, A; Carvalho, R; Quintans-Júnior, L J; Azevedo, E G; Botelho, M A

    2011-08-01

    In this study, we describe the antinociceptive activity of the ethanol extract (EE), chloroform (CF) and methanol (MF) fractions obtained from Sida cordifolia, popularly known in Brazil as "malva branca" or "malva branca sedosa". Leaves of S. cordifolia were used to produce the crude ethanol extract and after CF and MF. Experiments were conducted on Swiss mice using the glutamate and formalin-induced orofacial nociception. In the formalin test, all doses of EE, CF and MF significantly reduced the orofacial nociception in the first (p < 0.001) and second phase (p < 0.001), which was also naloxone-sensitive. In the glutamate-induced nociception test, only CF and MF significantly reduced the orofacial nociceptive behavior with inhibition percentage values of 48.1% (100 mg/kg, CF), 56.1% (200 mg/kg, CF), 66.4% (400 mg/kg, CF), 48.2 (200 mg/kg, MF) and 60.1 (400 mg/kg, MF). Furthermore, treatment of the animals with EE, CF and MF was not able to promote motor activity changes. These data demonstrate that S. cordifolia has a pronounced antinociceptive activity on orofacial nociception. However, pharmacological and chemical studies are necessary in order to characterize the responsible mechanisms for this antinociceptive action and also to identify other bioactive compounds present in S. cordifolia. Copyright © 2011 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  10. Reducing honey bee defensive responses and social wasp colonization with methyl anthranilate.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pankiw, Tanya

    2009-07-01

    Human victims of a massive number of stings have been steadily increasing since the invasion of Africanized honey bees (Apis mellifera) to the United States in 1990. Multiple honey bee stings may result in venom toxicity, leading to renal failure and even death. Here we tested the efficacy of methyl anthranilate as a honey bee repellent during a massive defensive response by Africanized honey bees. An aerosolized solution of 10% methyl anthranilate reduced the number of defensive bee hits to a retreating victim by 95% compared with a water control. One hundred fifty milliliters of the 10% methyl anthranilate solution sprayed onto stationary foam balls covered with black suede leather located 2 m from provoked Africanized colonies received 80% fewer stings than targets treated with water. Methyl anthranilate (100%) delivered through a UV blocking 3 mil polyethylene pouch was 100% effective in preventing Polistes colonization in wildlife observation huts and from the roof overhang of home patios. Although methyl anthranilate was not 100% effective in preventing honey bee stinging, it seemed to reduce number of stings below the average human LD50, indicative of a promising tool for preventing honey bee venom toxicity and wasp colonization.

  11. Presence of a dog reduces subjective but not physiological stress responses to an analog trauma.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lass-Hennemann, Johanna; Peyk, Peter; Streb, Markus; Holz, Elena; Michael, Tanja

    2014-01-01

    Dogs are known to have stress and anxiety reducing effects. Several studies have shown that dogs are able to calm people during cognitive and performance stressors. Recently, therapy dogs have been proposed as a treatment adjunct for post-traumatic stress disorder patients. In this study we aimed to investigate, whether dogs also have anxiety- and stress reducing effect during "traumatic stressors." 80 healthy female participants were randomly assigned to one of four conditions. They were exposed to a "traumatic" film clip (trauma-film-paradigm). For one group of participants a friendly dog was present during the film, one group of participants was accompanied by a friendly human, another control group watched the film with a toy animal and the last group watched the film clip alone. Participants that were accompanied by the dog during the film reported lower anxiety ratings and less negative affect after the film clip as compared to the "toy dog group" and the "alone group." Results of the "dog group" were comparable to the group that was accompanied by a friendly human. There were no differences in physiological stress responses between the four conditions. Our results show that dogs are able to lessen subjectively experienced stress and anxiety during a "traumatic" stress situation. This effect was comparable to that of social support by a friendly person. Implications for PTSD patients are discussed.

  12. RGS4 causes increased mortality and reduced cardiac hypertrophy in response to pressure overload.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rogers, J H; Tamirisa, P; Kovacs, A; Weinheimer, C; Courtois, M; Blumer, K J; Kelly, D P; Muslin, A J

    1999-09-01

    RGS family members are GTPase-activating proteins (GAPs) for heterotrimeric G proteins. There is evidence that altered RGS gene expression may contribute to the pathogenesis of cardiac hypertrophy and failure. We investigated the ability of RGS4 to modulate cardiac physiology using a transgenic mouse model. Overexpression of RGS4 in postnatal ventricular tissue did not affect cardiac morphology or basal cardiac function, but markedly compromised the ability of the heart to adapt to transverse aortic constriction (TAC). In contrast to wild-type mice, the transgenic animals developed significantly reduced ventricular hypertrophy in response to pressure overload and also did not exhibit induction of the cardiac "fetal" gene program. TAC of the transgenic mice caused a rapid decompensation in most animals characterized by left ventricular dilatation, depressed systolic function, and increased postoperative mortality when compared with nontransgenic littermates. These results implicate RGS proteins as a crucial component of the signaling pathway involved in both the cardiac response to acute ventricular pressure overload and the cardiac hypertrophic program.

  13. Identification of key factors that reduce the variability of the single photon response.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Caruso, Giovanni; Bisegna, Paolo; Andreucci, Daniele; Lenoci, Leonardo; Gurevich, Vsevolod V; Hamm, Heidi E; DiBenedetto, Emmanuele

    2011-05-10

    Rod photoreceptors mediate vision in dim light. Their biological function is to discriminate between distinct, very low levels of illumination, i.e., they serve as reliable photon counters. This role requires high reproducibility of the response to a particular number of photons. Indeed, single photon responses demonstrate unexpected low variability, despite the stochastic nature of the individual steps in the transduction cascade. We analyzed individual system mechanisms to identify their contribution to variability suppression. These include: (i) cooperativity of the regulation of the second messengers; (ii) diffusion of cGMP and Ca(2+) in the cytoplasm; and (iii) the effect of highly localized cGMP hydrolysis by activated phosphodiesterase resulting in local saturation. We find that (i) the nonlinear relationships between second messengers and current at the plasma membrane, and the cGMP hydrolysis saturation effects, play a major role in stabilizing the system; (ii) the presence of a physical space where the second messengers move by Brownian motion contributes to stabilization of the photoresponse; and (iii) keeping Ca(2+) at its dark level has only a minor effect on the variability of the system. The effects of diffusion, nonlinearity, and saturation synergize in reducing variability, supporting the notion that the observed high fidelity of the photoresponse is the result of global system function of phototransduction.

  14. Chronic Schistosoma japonicum infection reduces immune response to vaccine against hepatitis B in mice.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lin Chen

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Hepatitis B and schistosomiasis are most prevalent in Africa and Asia, and co-infections of both are frequent in these areas. The immunomodulation reported to be induced by schistosome infections might restrict immune control of hepatitis B virus (HBV leading to more severe viral infection. Vaccination is the most effective measure to control and prevent HBV infection, but there is evidence for a reduced immune response to the vaccine in patients with chronic schistosomiasis japonica. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: In this paper, we demonstrate in a mouse model that a chronic Schistosoma japonicum infection can inhibit the immune response to hepatitis B vaccine (HBV vaccine and lead to lower production of anti-HBs antibodies, interferon-γ (IFN-γ and interleukin-2 (IL-2. After deworming with Praziquantel (PZQ, the level of anti-HBs antibodies gradually increased and the Th2-biased profile slowly tapered. At 16 weeks after deworming, the levels of anti-HBs antibodies and Th1/Th2 cytokines returned to the normal levels. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: The results suggest that the preexisting Th2-dominated immune profile in the host infected with the parasite may down-regulate levels of anti-HBs antibodies and Th1 cytokines. To improve the efficacy of HBV vaccination in schistosome infected humans it may be valuable to treat them with praziquantel (PZQ some time prior to HBV vaccination.

  15. Salmonella enterica serovar Typhi impairs CD4 T cell responses by reducing antigen availability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Atif, Shaikh M; Winter, Sebastian E; Winter, Maria G; McSorley, Stephen J; Bäumler, Andreas J

    2014-06-01

    Salmonella enterica serovar Typhi is associated with a disseminated febrile illness in humans, termed typhoid fever, while Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium causes localized gastroenteritis in immunocompetent individuals. One of the genetic differences between both pathogens is the presence in S. Typhi of TviA, a regulatory protein that shuts down flagellin (FliC) expression when bacteria transit from the intestinal lumen into the intestinal mucosa. Here we investigated the consequences of TviA-mediated flagellum gene regulation on flagellin-specific CD4 T cell responses in a mouse model of S. Typhimurium infection. Introduction of the S. Typhi tviA gene into S. Typhimurium suppressed antigen presentation of dendritic cells to flagellin-specific CD4 T cells in vitro. Furthermore, TviA-mediated repression of flagellin expression impaired the activation and proliferation of naive flagellin-specific CD4 T cells in Peyer's patches and mesenteric lymph nodes, which was accompanied by increased bacterial dissemination to the spleen. We conclude that TviA-mediated repression of flagellin expression reduces antigen availability, thereby weakening flagellin-specific CD4 T cell responses.

  16. "Does replication groups scoring reduce false positive rate in SNP interaction discovery?: Response"

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    González-Pérez Antonio

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract A response to Toplak et al: Does replication groups scoring reduce false positive rate in SNP interaction discovery? BMC Genomics 2010, 11:58. Background The genomewide evaluation of genetic epistasis is a computationally demanding task, and a current challenge in Genetics. HFCC (Hypothesis-Free Clinical Cloning is one of the methods that have been suggested for genomewide epistasis analysis. In order to perform an exhaustive search of epistasis, HFCC has implemented several tools and data filters, such as the use of multiple replication groups, and direction of effect and control filters. A recent article has claimed that the use of multiple replication groups (as implemented in HFCC does not reduce the false positive rate, and we hereby try to clarify these issues. Results/Discussion HFCC uses, as an analysis strategy, the possibility of replicating findings in multiple replication groups, in order to select a liberal subset of preliminary results that are above a statistical criterion and consistent in direction of effect. We show that the use of replication groups and the direction filter reduces the false positive rate of a study, although at the expense of lowering the overall power of the study. A post-hoc analysis of these selected signals in the combined sample could then be performed to select the most promising results. Conclusion Replication of results in independent samples is generally used in scientific studies to establish credibility in a finding. Nonetheless, the combined analysis of several datasets is known to be a preferable and more powerful strategy for the selection of top signals. HFCC is a flexible and complete analysis tool, and one of its analysis options combines these two strategies: A preliminary multiple replication group analysis to eliminate inconsistent false positive results, and a post-hoc combined-group analysis to select the top signals.

  17. "Does replication groups scoring reduce false positive rate in SNP interaction discovery?: Response"

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-01

    A response to Toplak et al: Does replication groups scoring reduce false positive rate in SNP interaction discovery? BMC Genomics 2010, 11:58. Background The genomewide evaluation of genetic epistasis is a computationally demanding task, and a current challenge in Genetics. HFCC (Hypothesis-Free Clinical Cloning) is one of the methods that have been suggested for genomewide epistasis analysis. In order to perform an exhaustive search of epistasis, HFCC has implemented several tools and data filters, such as the use of multiple replication groups, and direction of effect and control filters. A recent article has claimed that the use of multiple replication groups (as implemented in HFCC) does not reduce the false positive rate, and we hereby try to clarify these issues. Results/Discussion HFCC uses, as an analysis strategy, the possibility of replicating findings in multiple replication groups, in order to select a liberal subset of preliminary results that are above a statistical criterion and consistent in direction of effect. We show that the use of replication groups and the direction filter reduces the false positive rate of a study, although at the expense of lowering the overall power of the study. A post-hoc analysis of these selected signals in the combined sample could then be performed to select the most promising results. Conclusion Replication of results in independent samples is generally used in scientific studies to establish credibility in a finding. Nonetheless, the combined analysis of several datasets is known to be a preferable and more powerful strategy for the selection of top signals. HFCC is a flexible and complete analysis tool, and one of its analysis options combines these two strategies: A preliminary multiple replication group analysis to eliminate inconsistent false positive results, and a post-hoc combined-group analysis to select the top signals. PMID:20576100

  18. Ovarian and endocrine responses in tropical sheep treated with reduced doses of cloprostenol.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Contreras-Solis, Ignacio; Vasquez, B; Diaz, T; Letelier, C; Lopez-Sebastian, A; Gonzalez-Bulnes, A

    2009-09-01

    The present study aimed to assess the efficacy of reduced doses of cloprostenol for synchronizing estrus and ovulation in hair sheep. With the aim to evaluate the luteolytic activity of reduced cloprostenol doses, a first experiment was performed using a relatively large (group H: 126 microg; n=8), medium (group M: 68.25 microg; n=6) and small (group L: 38.5 microg; n=6) cloprostenol dose. Luteolysis was assessed at Days 3 and 6 after injection (Day 0) by progesterone concentrations (P(4)) and transrectal ultrasonography (US). In Experiment 2, sheep were randomly assigned to the same three doses to evaluate a protocol for estrous synchronization using two injections administered 9 days apart. A third trial was performed with ewes treated (9 days apart) with the large dose (H=126 microg; n=12) and with a small dose adjusted for facilitating volume management (LA=43.75 microg; n=12). Presence of estrous cycling was determined in all the ewes by US and P(4) assay, at Days -9, -6, -2, 0 (Day of second cloprostenol injection), 8 and 11. Bleeding and US were done every 4h from 16 h of the beginning of the estrus during the third trial to assess the preovulatory LH surge and timing of ovulation. Additionally, blood samples were drawn at Days 0, 1, 2 and 3 to assess estradiol (Experiments 2 and 3) and P(4) (Experiment 2) concentrations during the ovarian follicular phase. In all experiments, percentage of animals showing luteolysis, preovulatory follicular dynamics and function and percentage of ewes showing behavioral estrus in response to treatment was similar among groups. Timing of estrus for group H was earlier than group L (28.6+/-1.8h compared with 37.1+/-2.4h; Psheep, with the additional advantage of reducing treatment costs.

  19. Hemodynamic responses to small muscle mass exercise in heart failure patients with reduced ejection fraction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barrett-O'Keefe, Zachary; Lee, Joshua F.; Berbert, Amanda; Witman, Melissa A. H.; Nativi-Nicolau, Jose; Stehlik, Josef; Richardson, Russell S.

    2014-01-01

    To better understand the mechanisms responsible for exercise intolerance in heart failure with reduced ejection fraction (HFrEF), the present study sought to evaluate the hemodynamic responses to small muscle mass exercise in this cohort. In 25 HFrEF patients (64 ± 2 yr) and 17 healthy, age-matched control subjects (64 ± 2 yr), mean arterial pressure (MAP), cardiac output (CO), and limb blood flow were examined during graded static-intermittent handgrip (HG) and dynamic single-leg knee-extensor (KE) exercise. During HG exercise, MAP increased similarly between groups. CO increased significantly (+1.3 ± 0.3 l/min) in the control group, but it remained unchanged across workloads in HFrEF patients. At 15% maximum voluntary contraction (MVC), forearm blood flow was similar between groups, while HFrEF patients exhibited an attenuated increase at the two highest intensities compared with controls, with the greatest difference at the highest workload (352 ± 22 vs. 492 ± 48 ml/min, HFrEF vs. control, 45% MVC). During KE exercise, MAP and CO increased similarly across work rates between groups. However, HFrEF patients exhibited a diminished leg hyperemic response across all work rates, with the most substantial decrement at the highest intensity (1,842 ± 64 vs. 2,675 ± 81 ml/min; HFrEF vs. control, 15 W). Together, these findings indicate a marked attenuation in exercising limb perfusion attributable to impairments in peripheral vasodilatory capacity during both arm and leg exercise in patients with HFrEF, which likely plays a role in limiting exercise capacity in this patient population. PMID:25260608

  20. Reduced object related negativity response indicates impaired auditory scene analysis in adults with autistic spectrum disorder

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Veema Lodhia

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available Auditory Scene Analysis provides a useful framework for understanding atypical auditory perception in autism. Specifically, a failure to segregate the incoming acoustic energy into distinct auditory objects might explain the aversive reaction autistic individuals have to certain auditory stimuli or environments. Previous research with non-autistic participants has demonstrated the presence of an Object Related Negativity (ORN in the auditory event related potential that indexes pre-attentive processes associated with auditory scene analysis. Also evident is a later P400 component that is attention dependent and thought to be related to decision-making about auditory objects. We sought to determine whether there are differences between individuals with and without autism in the levels of processing indexed by these components. Electroencephalography (EEG was used to measure brain responses from a group of 16 autistic adults, and 16 age- and verbal-IQ-matched typically-developing adults. Auditory responses were elicited using lateralized dichotic pitch stimuli in which inter-aural timing differences create the illusory perception of a pitch that is spatially separated from a carrier noise stimulus. As in previous studies, control participants produced an ORN in response to the pitch stimuli. However, this component was significantly reduced in the participants with autism. In contrast, processing differences were not observed between the groups at the attention-dependent level (P400. These findings suggest that autistic individuals have difficulty segregating auditory stimuli into distinct auditory objects, and that this difficulty arises at an early pre-attentive level of processing.

  1. Chronic methylphenidate exposure during adolescence reduces striatal synaptic responses to ethanol.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crowley, Nicole A; Cody, Patrick A; Davis, Margaret I; Lovinger, David M; Mateo, Yolanda

    2014-02-01

    Dopamine (DA) plays an important role in integrative functions contributing to adaptive behaviors. In support of this essential function, DA modulates synaptic plasticity in different brain areas, including the striatum. Many drugs used for cognitive enhancement are psychostimulants, such as methylphenidate (MPH), which enhance DA levels. MPH treatment is of interest during adolescence, a period of enhanced neurodevelopment during which the DA system is in a state of flux. Recent epidemiological studies report the co-abuse of MPH and ethanol in adolescents and young adults. Although repeated MPH treatment produces enduring changes that affect subsequent behavioral responses to other psychostimulants, few studies have investigated the interactions between MPH and ethanol. Here we addressed whether chronic therapeutic exposure to MPH during adolescence predisposed mice to an altered response to ethanol and whether this was accompanied by altered DA release and striatal plasticity. C57BL/6J mice were administered MPH (3-6 mg/kg/day) via the drinking water between post-natal days 30 and 60. Voltammetry experiments showed that sufficient brain MPH concentrations were achieved during adolescence in mice to increase the DA clearance in adulthood. The treatment also increased long-term depression and reduced the effects of ethanol on striatal synaptic responses. Although the injection of 0.4 or 2 g/kg ethanol dose-dependently decreased locomotion in control mice, only the higher dose decreased locomotion in MPH-treated mice. These results suggested that the administration of MPH during development promoted long-term effects on synaptic plasticity in forebrain regions targeted by DA. These changes in plasticity might, in turn, underlie alterations in behaviors controlled by these brain regions into adulthood.

  2. Deduction and Analysis of the Interacting Stress Response Pathways of Metal/Radionuclide-reducing Bacteria

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Zhou, Jizhong [University of Oklahoma; He, Zhili [University of Oklahoma

    2010-02-28

    Project Title: Deduction and Analysis of the Interacting Stress Response Pathways of Metal/Radionuclide-reducing Bacteria DOE Grant Number: DE-FG02-06ER64205 Principal Investigator: Jizhong (Joe) Zhou (University of Oklahoma) Key members: Zhili He, Aifen Zhou, Christopher Hemme, Joy Van Nostrand, Ye Deng, and Qichao Tu Collaborators: Terry Hazen, Judy Wall, Adam Arkin, Matthew Fields, Aindrila Mukhopadhyay, and David Stahl Summary Three major objectives have been conducted in the Zhou group at the University of Oklahoma (OU): (i) understanding of gene function, regulation, network and evolution of Desulfovibrio vugaris Hildenborough in response to environmental stresses, (ii) development of metagenomics technologies for microbial community analysis, and (iii) functional characterization of microbial communities with metagenomic approaches. In the past a few years, we characterized four CRP/FNR regulators, sequenced ancestor and evolved D. vulgaris strains, and functionally analyzed those mutated genes identified in salt-adapted strains. Also, a new version of GeoChip 4.0 has been developed, which also includes stress response genes (StressChip), and a random matrix theory-based conceptual framework for identifying functional molecular ecological networks has been developed with the high throughput functional gene array hybridization data as well as pyrosequencing data from 16S rRNA genes. In addition, GeoChip and sequencing technologies as well as network analysis approaches have been used to analyze microbial communities from different habitats. Those studies provide a comprehensive understanding of gene function, regulation, network, and evolution in D. vulgaris, and microbial community diversity, composition and structure as well as their linkages with environmental factors and ecosystem functioning, which has resulted in more than 60 publications.

  3. Trophically Unique Species Are Vulnerable to Cascading Extinction

    OpenAIRE

    Petchey, Owen L.; Eklöf, Anna; Borrvall, Charlotte; Ebenman, Bo

    2008-01-01

    Understanding which species might become extinct and the consequences of such loss is critical. One consequence is a cascade of further, secondary extinctions. While a significant amount is known about the types of communities and species that suffer secondary extinctions, little is known about the consequences of secondary extinctions for biodiversity. Here we examine the effect of these secondary extinctions on trophic diversity, the range of trophic roles played by the species in a communi...

  4. Progesterone administration reduces the behavioural and physiological responses of ewes to abrupt weaning of lambs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Freitas-de-Melo, A; Banchero, G; Hötzel, M J; Damián, J P; Ungerfeld, R

    2013-08-01

    Abrupt weaning, a usual management in sheep productive systems, may provoke behavioural and physiological responses indicative of stress in ewes and lambs. Progesterone (P4) has anxiolytic and sedative effects through the union of its metabolites that contain 3α-hydroxyl group to the γ-aminobutyricacidA receptor. Our first aim was to determine whether P4 administration reduces the behavioural and physiological responses of ewes to abrupt weaning of lambs. A complementary aim was to determine whether P4 treatment affects the milk yield and composition of ewes, and the BW of their lambs. In experiment 1, seven ewes received P4 treatment for 32 days (group E1-P4), and eight ewes remained as an untreated control group (group E1-C). BW of the lambs was recorded during P4 treatment. Lambs were weaned at 59 days (Day 0 = weaning). The main behaviours of the ewes before and after weaning were recorded using 10 min scan sampling. The ewes' serum total protein, albumin and globulin concentrations were measured before and after weaning of the lambs. In experiment 2, milk yield and composition were determined in two different groups of six ewes treated with P4 (group E2-P4) for 16 days and in five untreated controls (group E2-C). The BW of lambs increased with time (P = 0.001) in both groups and did not differ. The percentage of observations in which the ewes were seen pacing on Day 0 was greater in the E1-C group than in the E1-P4 group (P = 0.0007). Similarly, the percentage of observations in which the ewes were recorded vocalizing on Day 0 was greater in the E1-C group than in the E1-P4 group (P = 0.04). The percentage of observations in which E1-C ewes were recorded lying did not change from Days 0 to 1; however, it increased in E1-P4 ewes. Total serum protein concentration did not change in E1-P4 ewes from Days 0 to 3, although a decrease was seen in E1-C ewes (P = 0.04). Serum globulin concentration was greater in E1-P4 ewes on Day 3 than in E1-C ewes (P = 0.0008). In

  5. Marine reserves demonstrate trophic interactions across habitats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Langlois, Timothy J; Anderson, Marti J; Babcock, Russell C; Kato, Shin

    2006-02-01

    Several infaunal bivalve taxa show patterns of decreased biomass in areas with higher densities of adjacent reef-associated predators (the snapper, Pagrus auratus and rock lobster, Jasus edwardsii). A caging experiment was used to test the hypothesis that patterns observed were caused by predation, using plots seeded with a known initial density of the bivalve Dosinia subrosea to estimate survivorship. The caging experiment was replicated at several sites inside and outside two highly protected marine reserves: predators are significantly more abundant inside these reserves. Survivorship in fully caged, partially caged and open plots were then compared at sites having either low (non reserve) or high (reserve) predator density. The highest rates of survivorship of the bivalve were found in caged plots inside reserves and in all treatments outside reserves. However, inside reserves, open and partially caged treatments exhibited low survivorship. It was possible to specifically attribute much of this mortality to predation by large rock lobsters, due to distinctive marks on the valves of dead D. subrosea. This suggests that predation by large rock lobster could indeed account for the distributional patterns previously documented for certain bivalve populations. Our results illustrate that protection afforded by marine reserves is necessary to investigate how depletion through fishing pressure can change the role of upper-level predators and trophic processes between habitats.

  6. Experimental demonstration of a trophic cascade in the Galápagos rocky subtidal: Effects of consumer identity and behavior.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Witman, Jon D; Smith, Franz; Novak, Mark

    2017-01-01

    In diverse tropical webs, trophic cascades are presumed to be rare, as species interactions may dampen top-down control and reduce their prevalence. To test this hypothesis, we used an open experimental design in the Galápagos rocky subtidal that enabled a diverse guild of fish species, in the presence of each other and top predators (sea lions and sharks), to attack two species of sea urchins grazing on benthic algae. Time-lapse photography of experiments on natural and experimental substrates revealed strong species identity effects: only two predator species-blunthead triggerfish (Pseudobalistes naufragium) and finescale triggerfish (Balistes polylepis)-drove a diurnal trophic cascade extending to algae, and they preferred large pencil urchins (Eucidaris galapagensis) over green urchins (Lytechinus semituberculatus). Triggerfish predation effects were strong, causing a 24-fold reduction of pencil urchin densities during the initial 21 hours of a trophic cascade experiment. A trophic cascade was demonstrated for pencil urchins, but not for green urchins, by significantly higher percent cover of urchin-grazed algae in cages that excluded predatory fish than in predator access (fence) treatments. Pencil urchins were more abundant at night when triggerfish were absent, suggesting that this species persists by exploiting a nocturnal predation refuge. Time-series of pencil urchin survivorship further demonstrated per capita interference effects of hogfish and top predators. These interference effects respectively weakened and extended the trophic cascade to a fourth trophic level through behavioral modifications of the triggerfish-urchin interaction. We conclude that interference behaviors capable of modifying interaction strength warrant greater attention as mechanisms for altering top-down control, particularly in speciose food webs.

  7. The role of life histories and trophic interactions in population recovery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Audzijonyte, Asta; Kuparinen, Anna

    2016-08-01

    Factors affecting population recovery from depletion are at the focus of wildlife management. Particularly, it has been debated how life-history characteristics might affect population recovery ability and productivity. Many exploited fish stocks have shown temporal changes towards earlier maturation and reduced adult body size, potentially owing to evolutionary responses to fishing. Whereas such life-history changes have been widely documented, their potential role on stock's ability to recover from exploitation often remains ignored by traditional fisheries management. We used a marine ecosystem model parameterized for Southeastern Australian ecosystem to explore how changes towards "faster" life histories might affect population per capita growth rate r. We show that for most species changes towards earlier maturation during fishing have a negative effect (3-40% decrease) on r during the recovery phase. Faster juvenile growth and earlier maturation were beneficial early in life, but smaller adult body sizes reduced the lifetime reproductive output and increased adult natural mortality. However, both at intra- and inter-specific level natural mortality and trophic position of the species were as important in determining r as species longevity and age of maturation, suggesting that r cannot be predicted from life-history traits alone. Our study highlights that factors affecting population recovery ability and productivity should be explored in a multi-species context, where both age-specific fecundity and survival schedules are addressed simultaneously. It also suggests that contemporary life-history changes in harvested species are unlikely to increase their resilience and recovery ability. © 2016 Society for Conservation Biology.

  8. Linking predators to seasonality of upwelling: Using food web indicators and path analysis to infer trophic connections

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thompson, Sarah Ann; Sydeman, William J.; Santora, Jarrod A.; Black, Bryan A.; Suryan, Robert M.; Calambokidis, John; Peterson, William T.; Bograd, Steven J.

    2012-08-01

    Upwelling in eastern boundary current systems is a primary driver of ecosystem productivity. Typically, peak upwelling occurs during spring and summer, but winter upwelling may also be important to ecosystem functions. In this study, we investigated the hypothesis that winter and spring/summer upwelling, operating through indirect trophic interactions, are important to a suite of top predators in the California Current. To test this hypothesis, we collated information on upwelling, chlorophyll-a concentrations, zooplankton and forage fish, and related these to predator responses including rockfish growth, salmon abundance, seabird productivity and phenology (timing of egg-laying), and whale abundance. Seabird diets served in part as food web indicators. We modeled pathways of response using path analysis and tested for significance of the dominant paths with multiple regression. We found support for the hypothesis that relationships between upwelling and top predator variables were mediated primarily by intermediate trophic levels. Both winter and summer upwelling were important in path models, as were intermediate lower and mid trophic level functional groups represented by chlorophyll-a, zooplankton, and forage fish. Significant pathways of response explained from 50% to 80% of the variation of seabird (Cassin's auklet (Ptychoramphus aleuticus) and common murre (Uria aalge)), humpback whale (Megaptera novaeangliae) and Chinook salmon (Oncorhynchus tshawytscha) dependent variables, whereas splitnose rockfish (Sebastes diploproa) showed no significant response pathways. Upwelling and trophic responses for salmon were established for both the year of ocean entry and the year of return, with zooplankton important in the year of ocean entry and forage fish important in the year of return. This study provides one of the first comparative investigations between upwelling and predators, from fish to marine mammals and birds within a geographically restricted area

  9. Should I drink responsibly, safely or properly? Confusing messages about reducing alcohol-related harm.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, Sandra C; Hall, Sabine; Kypri, Kypros

    2017-01-01

    'Responsible drinking' campaigns emerged in the early 1970s as a means of addressing hazardous drinking and its related consequences. While these were initially the product of public health agencies and health-related NGOs, they are increasingly being developed and disseminated by the alcohol industry. There is considerable debate as to whether industry-generated campaigns are designed to reduce hazardous drinking and related problems (as argued by their developers) or are designed to avoid government regulation or even to increase sales. The aim of the present study was to explore the way that recent industry-developed responsible drinking campaigns are perceived and interpreted by the general public. That is, do they promote low-risk drinking, promote risky drinking, or just muddy the waters. Two sub-studies were conducted. The first, a mall intercept study with 180 adults in two Australian shopping districts, explored participants' understanding of slogans/taglines. The second, an online survey with 480 Australian adults, explored understandings and interpretations of television/online commercials. The results of the two studies revealed diversity in participants' interpretation of the 'responsible drinking' advertisements. Terminology utilised in industry-developed advertisements was found to be ambiguous; for example, what age group was being referred to in the tagline 'Kids and alcohol don't mix', and whether 'Drink Properly' meant not drinking to excess or drinking in a way that made you look more sophisticated. In Study Two, the government-developed campaign ('Know when to say when') was clearly interpreted as warning against risky consumption of alcohol; whereas the industry-developed campaigns ('How to drink properly', 'Kids absorb your drinking', 'Friends are waiting') were interpreted to have a range of different meanings, including some seemingly unrelated to alcohol. These findings are consistent with the literature evaluating anti-smoking campaigns

  10. Ecological and evolutionary consequences of tri-trophic interactions: Spatial variation and effects of plant density.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abdala-Roberts, Luis; Parra-Tabla, Víctor; Moreira, Xoaquín; Ramos-Zapata, José

    2017-02-01

    The factors driving variation in species interactions are often unknown, and few studies have made a link between changes in interactions and the strength of selection. We report on spatial variation in functional responses by a seed predator (SP) and its parasitic wasps associated with the herb Ruellia nudiflora. We assessed the influence of plant density on consumer responses and determined whether density effects and spatial variation in functional responses altered natural selection by these consumers on the plant. We established common gardens at two sites in Yucatan, Mexico, and planted R. nudiflora at two densities in each garden. We recorded fruit output and SP and parasitoid attack; calculated relative fitness (seed number) under scenarios of three trophic levels (accounting for SP and parasitoid effects), two trophic levels (accounting for SP but not parasitoid effects), and one trophic level (no consumer effects); and compared selection strength on fruit number under these scenarios across sites and densities. There was spatial variation in SP recruitment, whereby the SP functional response was negatively density-dependent at one site but density-independent at the other; parasitoid responses were density-independent and invariant across sites. Site variation in SP attack led, in turn, to differences in SP selection on fruit output, and parasitoids did not alter SP selection. There were no significant effects of density at either site. Our results provide a link between consumer functional responses and consumer selection on plants, which deepens our understanding of geographic variation in the evolutionary outcomes of multitrophic interactions. © 2017 Botanical Society of America.

  11. Human influences on trophic cascades along rocky shores

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lindberg, D.R.; Estes, J.A.; Warheit, K.I.

    1998-01-01

    A three-trophic-level interaction among American Black Oystercatchers (Haematopus bachmani), limpets (Lottia spp.), and erect fleshy algae in rocky intertidal communities of central and southern California was documented via manipulative and 'natural' experiments. Removal of the territorial limpet (Lottia gigantea) initially caused large increases in the percent cover of erect fleshy algae, followed by a more gradual increase in density of small limpets (Lottia spp.) and a decline in algal cover. Algal cover increased following the removal of small limpets at the sites from which L. gigantea had been removed earlier, thus demonstrating that the large and small limpets had similar inhibitory effects on plant populations. A comparison of sites with and without oyster-catchers showed that L. gigantea occupied substrate inclinations in proportion to their availability at sites where oystercatchers were rare, whereas the distribution of L. gigantea was skewed toward vertically inclined substrates where oystercatchers were common. Survival rates of limpets translocated to horizontal and vertical substrates were similar in sites lacking oystercatcher predation, but were much lower on horizontal substrates where oystercatchers were common. Our results are consistent with those from several prior studies in demonstrating that shorelines frequented by humans typically lack oystercatchers. Humans also exploit L. gigantea and reduce populations to low densities of small individuals. These findings may explain why the midlittoral zone of rocky intertidal communities in western North America are so often dominated by high population densities of small limpets.

  12. The disruption of the epithelial mesenchymal trophic unit in COPD.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Behzad, Ali R; McDonough, John E; Seyednejad, Nazgol; Hogg, James C; Walker, David C

    2009-12-01

    Progression of COPD is associated with a measurable increase in small airway wall thickness resulting from a repair and remodeling process that involves fibroblasts of the epithelial mesenchymal trophic unit (EMTU). The present study was designed to examine the organization of fibroblasts within the lamina propria of small airways with respect to their contacts with the epithelium and with each other in persons with COPD. Transmission electron microcopy (TEM) and three-dimensional (3D) reconstructions of serial TEM sections were used to estimate the frequency and determine the nature of the contacts between the epithelium and fibroblasts within the EMTU in small airways from 5 controls (smokers with normal lung function), from 6 persons with mild (GOLD-1) and 5 with moderate (GOLD-2) COPD. In airways from control lungs fibroblasts make frequent contact with cytoplasmic extensions of epithelial cells through apertures in the epithelial basal lamina, but the frequency of these fibroblast-epithelial contacts is reduced in both mild and moderate COPD compared to controls (p < 0.01). The 3D reconstructions showed that the cytoplasmic extensions of lamina propria fibroblasts form a reticulum with fibroblast-fibroblast contacts in an airway from a control subject but this reticulum may be reorganized in airways of COPD patients. Development of COPD is associated with significant disruption of the EMTU due to a reduction of contacts between fibroblasts and the epithelium.

  13. Trophic cascades in rocky shore tide pools: distinguishing lethal and nonlethal effects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trussell, Geoffrey C; Ewanchuk, Patrick J; Bertness, Mark D; Silliman, Brian R

    2004-05-01

    The effects of predators on the density of their prey can have positive indirect effects on the abundance of the prey's resource via a trophic cascade. This concept has strongly influenced contemporary views of how communities are structured. However, predators also can transmit indirect effects by inducing changes in prey traits. We show that the mere presence of predator risk cues can initiate a trophic cascade in rocky shore tide pools. In large (mean surface area =9 m2), natural tide pools, we manipulated crab density and their foraging ability to examine the relative importance of lethal (density-mediated) and non-lethal (trait-mediated) predator effects to algal community development. We found that perceived predation risk reduced snail density as much as the direct predation treatment, showing that green crab predation was not an important factor regulating local snail density. Instead, snail emigration away from resident crabs appears to be the most important factor regulating local snail density. As a result, the abundance of ephemeral green algae was similar in the predation risk and direct predation treatments, suggesting that the consumption of snails by crabs plays a minimal role in mediating the trophic cascade. Increased attention to trait-mediated effects that are transmitted by predator-induced changes in prey behavior may change our view of how predators exert their strong influence on community structure.

  14. Gut contents as direct indicators for trophic relationships in the Cambrian marine ecosystem.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vannier, Jean

    2012-01-01

    Present-day ecosystems host a huge variety of organisms that interact and transfer mass and energy via a cascade of trophic levels. When and how this complex machinery was established remains largely unknown. Although exceptionally preserved biotas clearly show that Early Cambrian animals had already acquired functionalities that enabled them to exploit a wide range of food resources, there is scant direct evidence concerning their diet and exact trophic relationships. Here I describe the gut contents of Ottoia prolifica, an abundant priapulid worm from the middle Cambrian (Stage 5) Burgess Shale biota. I identify the undigested exoskeletal remains of a wide range of small invertebrates that lived at or near the water sediment interface such as hyolithids, brachiopods, different types of arthropods, polychaetes and wiwaxiids. This set of direct fossil evidence allows the first detailed reconstruction of the diet of a 505-million-year-old animal. Ottoia was a dietary generalist and had no strict feeding regime. It fed on both living individuals and decaying organic matter present in its habitat. The feeding behavior of Ottoia was remarkably simple, reduced to the transit of food through an eversible pharynx and a tubular gut with limited physical breakdown and no storage. The recognition of generalist feeding strategies, exemplified by Ottoia, reveals key-aspects of modern-style trophic complexity in the immediate aftermath of the Cambrian explosion. It also shows that the middle Cambrian ecosystem was already too complex to be understood in terms of simple linear dynamics and unique pathways.

  15. Gut contents as direct indicators for trophic relationships in the Cambrian marine ecosystem.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jean Vannier

    Full Text Available Present-day ecosystems host a huge variety of organisms that interact and transfer mass and energy via a cascade of trophic levels. When and how this complex machinery was established remains largely unknown. Although exceptionally preserved biotas clearly show that Early Cambrian animals had already acquired functionalities that enabled them to exploit a wide range of food resources, there is scant direct evidence concerning their diet and exact trophic relationships. Here I describe the gut contents of Ottoia prolifica, an abundant priapulid worm from the middle Cambrian (Stage 5 Burgess Shale biota. I identify the undigested exoskeletal remains of a wide range of small invertebrates that lived at or near the water sediment interface such as hyolithids, brachiopods, different types of arthropods, polychaetes and wiwaxiids. This set of direct fossil evidence allows the first detailed reconstruction of the diet of a 505-million-year-old animal. Ottoia was a dietary generalist and had no strict feeding regime. It fed on both living individuals and decaying organic matter present in its habitat. The feeding behavior of Ottoia was remarkably simple, reduced to the transit of food through an eversible pharynx and a tubular gut with limited physical breakdown and no storage. The recognition of generalist feeding strategies, exemplified by Ottoia, reveals key-aspects of modern-style trophic complexity in the immediate aftermath of the Cambrian explosion. It also shows that the middle Cambrian ecosystem was already too complex to be understood in terms of simple linear dynamics and unique pathways.

  16. Trophic complexity and the adaptive value of damage-induced plant volatiles.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ian Kaplan

    Full Text Available Indirect plant defenses are those facilitating the action of carnivores in ridding plants of their herbivorous consumers, as opposed to directly poisoning or repelling them. Of the numerous and diverse indirect defensive strategies employed by plants, inducible volatile production has garnered the most fascination among plant-insect ecologists. These volatile chemicals are emitted in response to feeding by herbivorous arthropods and serve to guide predators and parasitic wasps to their prey. Implicit in virtually all discussions of plant volatile-carnivore interactions is the premise that plants "call for help" to bodyguards that serve to boost plant fitness by limiting herbivore damage. This, by necessity, assumes a three-trophic level food chain where carnivores benefit plants, a theoretical framework that is conceptually tractable and convenient, but poorly depicts the complexity of food-web dynamics occurring in real communities. Recent work suggests that hyperparasitoids, top consumers acting from the fourth trophic level, exploit the same plant volatile cues used by third trophic level carnivores. Further, hyperparasitoids shift their foraging preferences, specifically cueing in to the odor profile of a plant being damaged by a parasitized herbivore that contains their host compared with damage from an unparasitized herbivore. If this outcome is broadly representative of plant-insect food webs at large, it suggests that damage-induced volatiles may not always be beneficial to plants with major implications for the evolution of anti-herbivore defense and manipulating plant traits to improve biological control in agricultural crops.

  17. Effect of grazers and viruses on bacterial community structure and production in two contrasting trophic lakes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Domaizon Isabelle

    2011-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Over the last 30 years, extensive studies have revealed the crucial roles played by microbes in aquatic ecosystems. It has been shown that bacteria, viruses and protozoan grazers are dominant in terms of abundance and biomass. The frequent interactions between these microbiological compartments are responsible for strong trophic links from dissolved organic matter to higher trophic levels, via heterotrophic bacteria, which form the basis for the important biogeochemical roles of microbial food webs in aquatic ecosystems. To gain a better understanding of the interactions between bacteria, viruses and flagellates in lacustrine ecosystems, we investigated the effect of protistan bacterivory on bacterial abundance, production and structure [determined by 16S rRNA PCR-DGGE], and viral abundance and activity of two lakes of contrasting trophic status. Four experiments were conducted in the oligotrophic Lake Annecy and the mesotrophic Lake Bourget over two seasons (early spring vs. summer using a fractionation approach. In situ dark vs. light incubations were performed to consider the effects of the different treatments in the presence and absence of phototrophic activity. Results The presence of grazers (i.e. Conclusions Our results highlight the importance of a synergistic effect, i.e. the positive influence of grazers on viral activities in sustaining (directly and indirectly bacterial production and affecting composition, in both oligotrophic and mesotrophic lakes.

  18. Eutrophication potential of lakes: an integrated analysis of trophic state, morphometry, land occupation, and land use

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    RF Silvino

    Full Text Available AbstractDespite being inside a protected area, Lake Sumidouro has been impacted by the anthropogenic occupation of the surrounding area since the 1970’s, compromising the ecological integrity of the lake and the sustainable use of natural resources. This study examined the current trophic classification of the lake and developed methods for improving it through an integrated analysis of morphometric and limnological parameters, land use and land occupation in the watershed, and eutrophication potential. Data for the limnological parameters, land use and land occupation, and morphometric characteristics of Lake Sumidouro were collected in the rainy and dry seasons of 2009 and 2010. Depending on the trophic classification system used, Lake Sumidouro is classified as oligotrophic to hypereutrophic. In our study, the highest concentration of nutrients occurred in the rainy season, indicating that high nutrient inputs played an important role during this period. Areas of anthropogenic occupation comprised approximately 62.9% of the total area of the watershed, with pasture and urban settlement as the main types of land use. The influent total phosphorus load was estimated to be 15,824.3 kg/year. To maintain mesotrophic conditions, this load must be reduced by 29.4%. By comparing the isolated use of trophic state indices, this study demonstrated that comparing the trophic state classification with morphometric analyses, land use and land occupation types in the watershed, and potential phosphorus load provided better information to guide management actions for restoration and conservation. Furthermore, this approach also allowed for evaluating the vulnerability of the environment to the eutrophication process.

  19. Nitrogen and Carbon Dynamics Across Trophic Levels Along an Atmospheric Nitrogen Deposition Gradient

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    Wissinger, B. D.; Bell, M. D.; Newingham, B. A.

    2011-12-01

    Atmospheric nitrogen deposition has altered soil biogeochemical processes and plant communities across the United States. Prior investigations have demonstrated these alterations; however, little is known about the effects of elevated nitrogen on higher trophic levels. Building upon previous research that revealed an atmospheric nitrogen deposition gradient from the San Bernardino Mountains through Joshua Tree National Park in California, we investigated atmospheric nitrogen and its effects on soils, plants, and harvester ants. We measured nitrogen and carbon concentrations, along with carbon and nitrogen stable isotopes, across trophic levels at eighteen urban and unpopulated sites along the deposition gradient. Carbon and nitrogen attributes were determined in atmospheric nitric acid, soil, Larrea tridentata and Ambrosia dumosa leaves, seeds from selected plant species, and ants. We predicted carbon and nitrogen ratios and isotopes to change in areas with higher nitrogen deposition and vary along the deposition gradient. Nitrogen (p=0.02) and carbon (p=0.05) concentrations, as well as C:N ratios (p=<0.001), significantly differed in Messor pergandei individuals among sites; however, no correlation was found between these carbon and nitrogen attributes and the nitrogen deposition gradient (%N r2=0.02, %C r2=0.007, C:N r2=0.02). The δ15N and δ13C values of the ants, leaf tissues, and seeds measured across the gradient follow similar patterns with r2 values all below 0.20. Our results suggest the current and previous rates of nitrogen deposition in this area are not enough to modify nitrogen and carbon concentrations and isotope values. Compensatory nitrogen cycling processes in the soil may reduce the effects of increased nitrogen on plants and thus higher trophic levels. Nitrogen and carbon dynamics across trophic levels might change after longer ecosystem exposure to elevated nitrogen; however, other abiotic and biotic factors are likely driving current

  20. Drivers of trophic amplification of ocean productivity trends in a changing climate

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    Stock, C. A.; Dunne, J. P.; John, J. G.

    2014-07-01

    Pronounced projected 21st century trends in regional oceanic net primary production (NPP) raise the prospect of significant redistributions of marine resources. Recent results further suggest that NPP changes may be amplified at higher trophic levels. Here, we elucidate the role of planktonic food web dynamics in driving projected changes in mesozooplankton production (MESOZP) found to be, on average, twice as large as projected changes in NPP by the latter half of the 21st century under a high emissions scenario. Globally, MESOZP was projected to decline by 7.9% but regional MESOZP changes sometimes exceeded 50%. Changes in three planktonic food web properties - zooplankton growth efficiency (ZGE), the trophic level of mesozooplankton (MESOTL), and the fraction of NPP consumed by zooplankton (zooplankton-phytoplankton coupling, ZPC), were demonstrated to be responsible for the projected amplification. Zooplankton growth efficiencies (ZGE) changed with NPP, amplifying both NPP increases and decreases. Negative amplification (i.e., exacerbation) of projected subtropical NPP declines via this mechanism was particularly strong since consumers in the subtropics already have limited surplus energy above basal metabolic costs. Increased mesozooplankton trophic level (MESOTL) resulted from projected declines in large phytoplankton production, the primary target of herbivorous mesozooplankton. This further amplified negative subtropical NPP declines but was secondary to ZGE and, at higher latitudes, was often offset by increased ZPC. Marked ZPC increases were projected for high latitude regions experiencing shoaling of deep winter mixing or decreased winter sea ice - both tending to increase winter zooplankton biomass and enhance grazer control of spring blooms. Increased ZPC amplified projected NPP increases associated with declining sea ice in the Artic and damped projected NPP declines associated with decreased mixing in the Northwest Atlantic and Southern Ocean

  1. Drivers of trophic amplification of ocean productivity trends in a changing climate

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C. A. Stock

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available Pronounced projected 21st century trends in regional oceanic net primary production (NPP raise the prospect of significant redistributions of marine resources. Recent results further suggest that NPP changes may be amplified at higher trophic levels. Here, we elucidate the role of planktonic food web dynamics in driving projected changes in mesozooplankton production (MESOZP found to be, on average, twice as large as projected changes in NPP by the latter half of the 21st century under a high emissions scenario. Globally, MESOZP was projected to decline by 7.9% but regional MESOZP changes sometimes exceeded 50%. Changes in three planktonic food web properties – zooplankton growth efficiency (ZGE, the trophic level of mesozooplankton (MESOTL, and the fraction of NPP consumed by zooplankton (zooplankton-phytoplankton coupling, ZPC, were demonstrated to be responsible for the projected amplification. Zooplankton growth efficiencies (ZGE changed with NPP, amplifying both NPP increases and decreases. Negative amplification (i.e., exacerbation of projected subtropical NPP declines via this mechanism was particularly strong since consumers in the subtropics already have limited surplus energy above basal metabolic costs. Increased mesozooplankton trophic level (MESOTL resulted from projected declines in large phytoplankton production, the primary target of herbivorous mesozooplankton. This further amplified negative subtropical NPP declines but was secondary to ZGE and, at higher latitudes, was often offset by increased ZPC. Marked ZPC increases were projected for high latitude regions experiencing shoaling of deep winter mixing or decreased winter sea ice – both tending to increase winter zooplankton biomass and enhance grazer control of spring blooms. Increased ZPC amplified projected NPP increases associated with declining sea ice in the Artic and damped projected NPP declines associated with decreased mixing in the Northwest Atlantic and

  2. Assessment of the trophic status of four coastal lagoons and one estuarine delta, eastern Brazil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cotovicz Junior, Luiz Carlos; Brandini, Nilva; Knoppers, Bastiaan Adriaan; Mizerkowski, Byanka Damian; Sterza, José Mauro; Ovalle, Alvaro Ramon Coelho; Medeiros, Paulo Ricardo Petter

    2013-04-01

    Anthropogenic eutrophication of aquatic ecosystems continues to be one of the major environmental issues worldwide and also of Brazil. Over the last five decades, several approaches have been proposed to discern the trophic state and the natural and cultural processes involved in eutrophication, including the multi-parameter Assessment of Estuarine Trophic Status (ASSETS) index model. This study applies ASSETS to four Brazilian lagoons (Mundaú, Manguaba, Guarapina, and Piratininga) and one estuarine delta (Paraíba do Sul River), set along the eastern Brazilian coast. The model combines three indices based on the pressure-state-response (PSR) approach to rank the trophic status and forecast the potential eutrophication of a system, to which a final ASSETS grade is established. The lagoons were classified as being eutrophic and highly susceptible to eutrophication, due primarily to their longer residence times but also their high nutrient input index. ASSETS classified the estuary of the Paraíba do Sul river with a low to moderate trophic state (e.g., largely mesotrophic) and low susceptibility to eutrophication. Its nutrient input index was high, but the natural high dilution and flushing potential driven by river flow mitigated the susceptibility to eutrophication. Eutrophication forecasting provided more favorable trends for the Mundaú and Manguaba lagoons and the Paraíba do Sul estuary, in view of the larger investments in wastewater treatment and remediation plans. The final ASSETS ranking system established the lagoons of Mundaú as "moderate," Manguaba as "bad," Guarapina as "poor," and Piratininga as "bad," whereas the Paraíba do Sul River Estuary was "good."

  3. Responses of spring phenology to climate warming reduced over the past decades

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fu, Yongshuo. H.; Zhao, hongfang; piao, Shilong; Peaucelle, Marc; Peng, Shushi; Zhou, Guiyun; Ciais, Philippe; Huang, Mengtian; Menzel, Annette; Penuelas, Josep; Song, Yang; Vitasse, Yann; Zeng, Zhenzhong; Janssens, Ivan. A.

    2016-04-01

    The phenology of spring leaf unfolding is one of the key indicators of the climate change on ecosystems, and influences regional and hemispheric-scale carbon balances and plant-animal interactions. Changes in the phenology of spring leaf unfolding can also exert biophysical feedbacks on climate by modifying the surface albedo and energy budget. Recent studies have reported significant advances in spring phenology as a result of warming in most northern hemisphere regions. Climate warming is projected to further increase, but the future evolution of the phenology of spring leaf unfolding remains uncertain - in view of the imperfect understanding of how the underlying mechanisms respond to environmental stimuli. In addition, the relative contributions of each environmental stimulus, which together define the apparent temperature sensitivity of the phenology of spring leaf unfolding (advances in days per degree Celsius warming, ST), may also change over time. An improved characterization of the variation in phenological responses to spring temperature is thus valuable, provided that it addresses temporal and spatial scales relevant for regional projections. Using long-term in situ observations of leaf unfolding for seven dominant European tree species at 1,245 sites, we show here that the apparent response of leaf unfolding to climate warming (ST, expressed in days advance per ° C) has significantly decreased from 1980 to 2013 in all monitored tree species. Averaged across all species and sites, ST decreased by 40% from 4.0 ± 1.8 days ° C-1 during 1980-1994 to 2.3 ± 1.6 days ° C-1 during 1999-2013. The declining ST was also simulated by chilling-based phenology models, albeit with a weaker decline (24%-30%) than observed in situ. The reduction in ST is likely to be partly attributable to reduced chilling. Nonetheless, other mechanisms may also play a role, such as 'photoperiod limitation' mechanisms that may become ultimately limiting when leaf unfolding dates

  4. Stress responses to short-term intensified and reduced training in competitive weightlifters.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Storey, A G; Birch, N P; Fan, V; Smith, H K

    2016-01-01

    We sought to identify and evaluate the tolerance to, and consequences of, short-term variations in training load in competitive weightlifters. Seven international-level lifters performed 1 week of initial training followed by 2 weeks of intensified (INT: +100%, 36.5 ± 11.3 × 10(3)  kg/week) and 1 week of subsequently reduced (RED: -25%) training within their annual program. After INT, but not RED, 90 min of weightlifting increased mRNA levels of chemokine (C-C motif) ligand 4 (CCL4), chemokine (C-X-C motif) receptor 4 (CXCR4) and cellular stress-associated DNA-damage-inducible transcript 4 (DDIT4) in peripheral blood mononuclear cells by 40-240%. Resting- and weightlifting-induced changes in plasma protein carbonyls, indicative of oxidative stress, but not pro-inflammatory CCL4 concentrations differed between INT and RED. Symptoms of stress (Daily Analysis of Life Demands of Athletes questionnaire) were reported as worse than normal more frequently during INT and RED than initial training. Global (negative) mood state increased during INT and declined during RED. Maximal snatch (-4.3 ± 3.7%) and vertical jump (-7.2 ± 6.5%), but not clean and jerk, were reduced after INT and restored after RED. Chemokine signaling may thus be part of the stress response to intense weightlifting and short-term reductions in training load support recovery from periodic INT training in weightlifters. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons A/S. Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  5. Impaired mastication reduced newly generated neurons at the accessory olfactory bulb and pheromonal responses in mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Utsugi, Chizuru; Miyazono, Sadaharu; Osada, Kazumi; Matsuda, Mitsuyoshi; Kashiwayanagi, Makoto

    2014-12-01

    A large number of neurons are generated at the subventricular zone (SVZ) even during adulthood. In a previous study, we have shown that a reduced mastication impairs both neurogenesis in the SVZ and olfactory functions. Pheromonal signals, which are received by the vomeronasal organ, provide information about reproductive and social states. Vomeronasal sensory neurons project to the accessory olfactory bulb (AOB) located on the dorso-caudal surface of the main olfactory bulb. Newly generated neurons at the SVZ migrate to the AOB and differentiate into granule cells and periglomerular cells. This study aimed to explore the effects of changes in mastication on newly generated neurons and pheromonal responses. Bromodeoxyuridine-immunoreactive (BrdU-ir; a marker of DNA synthesis) and Fos-ir (a marker of neurons excited) structures in sagittal sections of the AOB after exposure to urinary odours were compared between the mice fed soft and hard diets. The density of BrdU-ir cells in the AOB in the soft-diet-fed mice after 1 month was essentially similar to that of the hard-diet-fed mice, while that was lower in the soft-diet-fed mice for 3 or 6 months than in the hard-diet-fed mice. The density of Fos-ir cells in the soft-diet-fed mice after 2 months was essentially similar to that in the hard-diet-fed mice, while that was lower in the soft-diet-fed mice for 4 months than in the hard-diet-fed mice. The present results suggest that impaired mastication reduces newly generated neurons at the AOB, which in turn impairs olfactory function at the AOB. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  6. Contemplative/emotion training reduces negative emotional behavior and promotes prosocial responses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kemeny, Margaret E; Foltz, Carol; Cavanagh, James F; Cullen, Margaret; Giese-Davis, Janine; Jennings, Patricia; Rosenberg, Erika L; Gillath, Omri; Shaver, Phillip R; Wallace, B Alan; Ekman, Paul

    2012-04-01

    Contemplative practices are believed to alleviate psychological problems, cultivate prosocial behavior and promote self-awareness. In addition, psychological science has developed tools and models for understanding the mind and promoting well-being. Additional effort is needed to combine frameworks and techniques from these traditions to improve emotional experience and socioemotional behavior. An 8-week intensive (42 hr) meditation/emotion regulation training intervention was designed by experts in contemplative traditions and emotion science to reduce "destructive enactment of emotions" and enhance prosocial responses. Participants were 82 healthy female schoolteachers who were randomly assigned to a training group or a wait-list control group, and assessed preassessment, postassessment, and 5 months after training completion. Assessments included self-reports and experimental tasks to capture changes in emotional behavior. The training group reported reduced trait negative affect, rumination, depression, and anxiety, and increased trait positive affect and mindfulness compared to the control group. On a series of behavioral tasks, the training increased recognition of emotions in others (Micro-Expression Training Tool), protected trainees from some of the psychophysiological effects of an experimental threat to self (Trier Social Stress Test; TSST), appeared to activate cognitive networks associated with compassion (lexical decision procedure), and affected hostile behavior in the Marital Interaction Task. Most effects at postassessment that were examined at follow-up were maintained (excluding positive affect, TSST rumination, and respiratory sinus arrhythmia recovery). Findings suggest that increased awareness of mental processes can influence emotional behavior, and they support the benefit of integrating contemplative theories/practices with psychological models and methods of emotion regulation.

  7. Association of TCF7L2 gene polymorphisms with reduced acute insulin response in Hispanic Americans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Palmer, Nicholette D; Lehtinen, Allison B; Langefeld, Carl D; Campbell, Joel K; Haffner, Steven M; Norris, Jill M; Bergman, Richard N; Goodarzi, Mark O; Rotter, Jerome I; Bowden, Donald W

    2008-01-01

    Genetic variation at the transcription factor 7-like 2 locus has been linked to type 2 diabetes in predominantly European-derived populations. The biological basis of these associations remains to be determined. The objective of this study was to evaluate previously associated variants for association with measures of glucose homeostasis in Hispanic-Americans and African-Americans and determine the biological mechanism(s) through which these variants exert their effect. This study was the Insulin Resistance Atherosclerosis Family Study (IRAS-FS). The IRAS-FS is a community-based study of Hispanic-Americans (San Antonio, TX, and San Luis Valley, CO) and African-Americans (Los Angeles, CA). A total of 1040 Hispanic-American and 500 African-American individuals from the IRAS-FS formed the basis of this study. MAIN OUTCOMES MEASURES(S): The primary glucose homeostasis phenotypes of interest in this study were derived from the frequently sampled iv glucose tolerance test and include insulin sensitivity, acute insulin response, and disposition index. In Hispanic-Americans, significant evidence of association was observed between single-nucleotide polymorphisms rs7903146 and rs112255372 with reduced insulin secretion as measured by acute insulin response and adjusted for the degree of insulin sensitivity (P = 0.032 and 0.036, respectively). Other quantitative measures, e.g. insulin sensitivity or disposition index, were not associated with the single nucleotide polymorphisms examined. In African-Americans there was no evidence of association observed. These results suggest that transcription factor 7-like 2 variants could play a role in the pathogenesis of type 2 diabetes in the Hispanic-American population through a mechanism involving insulin secretion.

  8. The capsule of Porphyromonas gingivalis reduces the immune response of human gingival fibroblasts

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    van Winkelhoff Arie J

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Periodontitis is a bacterial infection of the periodontal tissues. The Gram-negative anaerobic bacterium Porphyromonas gingivalis is considered a major causative agent. One of the virulence factors of P. gingivalis is capsular polysaccharide (CPS. Non-encapsulated strains have been shown to be less virulent in mouse models than encapsulated strains. Results To examine the role of the CPS in host-pathogen interactions we constructed an insertional isogenic P. gingivalis knockout in the epimerase-coding gene epsC that is located at the end of the CPS biosynthesis locus. This mutant was subsequently shown to be non-encapsulated. K1 capsule biosynthesis could be restored by in trans expression of an intact epsC gene. We used the epsC mutant, the W83 wild type strain and the complemented mutant to challenge human gingival fibroblasts to examine the immune response by quantification of IL-1β, IL-6 and IL-8 transcription levels. For each of the cytokines significantly higher expression levels were found when fibroblasts were challenged with the epsC mutant compared to those challenged with the W83 wild type, ranging from two times higher for IL-1β to five times higher for IL-8. Conclusions These experiments provide the first evidence that P. gingivalis CPS acts as an interface between the pathogen and the host that may reduce the host's pro-inflammatory immune response. The higher virulence of encapsulated strains may be caused by this phenomenon which enables the bacteria to evade the immune system.

  9. Leukocyte TLR5 deficiency inhibits atherosclerosis by reduced macrophage recruitment and defective T-cell responsiveness

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    Ellenbroek, Guilielmus H.J.M.; van Puijvelde, Gijs H.M.; Anas, Adam A.; Bot, Martine; Asbach, Miriam; Schoneveld, Arjan; van Santbrink, Peter J.; Foks, Amanda C.; Timmers, Leo; Doevendans, Pieter A.; Pasterkamp, Gerard; Hoefer, Imo E.; van der Poll, Tom; Kuiper, Johan; de Jager, Saskia C.A.

    2017-01-01

    Toll-like receptors (TLR) provide a critical link between innate and adaptive immunity, both important players in atherosclerosis. Since evidence for the role of TLR5 is lacking, we aimed to establish this in the immune axis of atherosclerosis. We assessed the effect of the TLR5-specific ligand Flagellin on macrophage maturation and T-cell polarisation. Next, we generated TLR5−/−LDLr−/− chimeras to study the effect of hematopoietic TLR5 deficiency on atherosclerosis formation. Flagellin stimulation did not influence wildtype or TLR5−/− macrophage maturation. Only in wildtype macrophages, Flagellin exposure increased MCP-1 and IL6 expression. Flagellin alone reduced T-helper 1 proliferation, which was completely overruled in the presence of T-cell receptor activation. In vivo, hematopoietic TLR5 deficiency attenuated atherosclerotic lesion formation by ≈25% (1030*103 ± 63*103 vs. 792*103 ± 61*103 μm2; p = 0.013) and decreased macrophage area (81.3 ± 12.0 vs. 44.2 ± 6.6 μm2; p = 0.011). In TLR5−/− chimeric mice, we observed lower IL6 plasma levels (36.4 ± 5.6 vs. 15.1 ± 2.2 pg/mL; p = 0.003), lower (activated) splenic CD4+ T-cell content (32.3 ± 2.1 vs. 21.0 ± 1.2%; p = 0.0018), accompanied by impaired T-cell proliferative responses. In conclusion, hematopoietic TLR5 deficiency inhibits atherosclerotic lesion formation by attenuated macrophage accumulation and defective T-cell responsiveness. PMID:28202909

  10. Cytokine profile in PFAPA syndrome suggests continuous inflammation and reduced anti-inflammatory response.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stojanov, Silvia; Hoffmann, Florian; Kéry, Anja; Renner, Ellen D; Hartl, Dominik; Lohse, Peter; Huss, Kristina; Fraunberger, Peter; Malley, James D; Zellerer, Stephanie; Albert, Michael H; Belohradsky, Bernd H

    2006-06-01

    PFAPA syndrome is characterized by periodic episodes of high fever, aphthous stomatitis, pharyngitis, and/or cervical adenitis. It is of unknown etiology and manifests usually before 5 years of age. We determined serum and intracellular cytokine levels in six PFAPA patients (4 males, 2 females, mean age 8 years (+/- 1.2 SEM), range 4-13) during the symptom-free period as well as 6-12 hours and 18-24 hours after fever onset. Values were compared to age-matched, healthy controls. Febrile PFAPA attacks led to a significant increase in IL-6 and IFN-gamma serum concentrations compared to symptom-free periods and to controls, with IL-1beta, TNF-alpha and IL-12p70 levels being significantly higher than in controls. Lymphocytic IFN-gamma and CD8+ IL-2 production was consistently significantly elevated compared to healthy children. During the asymptomatic period, serum concentrations of IL-1beta, IL-6, TNF-alpha and IL-12p70 were significantly increased compared to controls. Intracellular TNF-alpha synthesis was not elevated at any time point. Soluble TNFRp55 levels were even lower in between febrile episodes, reaching values comparable to controls during attacks, whereas soluble TNFRp75 levels increased during attacks compared to healthy children. Anti-inflammatory IL-4 in serum was at all times lower in PFAPA patients compared to controls with no difference in levels of intracellular IL-4 and IL-10 or serum IL-10. The observed increase of pro-inflammatory mediators, even between febrile attacks, suggests a dysregulation of the immune response in PFAPA syndrome, with continuous pro-inflammatory cytokine activation and a reduced anti-inflammatory response.

  11. Probiotics reduce symptoms of antibiotic use in a hospital setting: a randomized dose response study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ouwehand, Arthur C; DongLian, Cai; Weijian, Xu; Stewart, Morgan; Ni, Jiayi; Stewart, Tad; Miller, Larry E

    2014-01-16

    Probiotics are known to reduce antibiotic associated diarrhea (AAD) and Clostridium difficile associated diarrhea (CDAD) risk in a strain-specific manner. The aim of this study was to determine the dose-response effect of a four strain probiotic combination (HOWARU(®) Restore) on the incidence of AAD and CDAD and severity of gastrointestinal symptoms in adult in-patients requiring antibiotic therapy. Patients (n=503) were randomized among three study groups: HOWARU(®) Restore probiotic 1.70×10(10) CFU (high-dose, n=168), HOWARU(®) Restore probiotic 4.17×10(9) CFU (low-dose, n=168), or placebo (n=167). Subjects were stratified by gender, age, and duration of antibiotic treatment. Study products were administered daily up to 7 days after the final antibiotic dose. The primary endpoint of the study was the incidence of AAD. Secondary endpoints included incidence of CDAD, diarrhea duration, stools per day, bloody stools, fever, abdominal cramping, and bloating. A significant dose-response effect on AAD was observed with incidences of 12.5, 19.6, and 24.6% with high-dose, low-dose, and placebo, respectively (p=0.02). CDAD was the same in both probiotic groups (1.8%) but different from the placebo group (4.8%; p=0.04). Incidences of fever, abdominal pain, and bloating were lower with increasing probiotic dose. The number of daily liquid stools and average duration of diarrhea decreased with higher probiotic dosage. The tested four strain probiotic combination appears to lower the risk of AAD, CDAD, and gastrointestinal symptoms in a dose-dependent manner in adult in-patients.

  12. Diet-induced obesity reduces the responsiveness of the peripheral taste receptor cells.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amanda B Maliphol

    Full Text Available INTRODUCTION: Obesity is a growing epidemic that causes many serious health related complications. While the causes of obesity are complex, there is conclusive evidence that overconsumption coupled with a sedentary lifestyle is the primary cause of this medical condition. Dietary consumption is controlled by appetite which is in turn regulated by multiple neuronal systems, including the taste system. However, the relationship between taste and obesity has not been well defined. Growing evidence suggests that taste perception in the brain is altered in obese animals and humans, however no studies have determined if there are altered taste responses in the peripheral taste receptor cells, which is the initiation site for the detection and perception of taste stimuli. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: In this study, we used C57Bl/6 mice which readily become obese when placed on a high fat diet. After ten weeks on the high fat diet, we used calcium imaging to measure how taste-evoked calcium signals were affected in the obese mice. We found that significantly fewer taste receptor cells were responsive to some appetitive taste stimuli while the numbers of taste cells that were sensitive to aversive taste stimuli did not change. Properties of the taste-evoked calcium signals were also significantly altered in the obese mice. Behavioral analyses found that mice on the high fat diet had reduced ability to detect some taste stimuli compared to their littermate controls. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Our findings demonstrate that diet-induced obesity significantly influences peripheral taste receptor cell signals which likely leads to changes in the central taste system and may cause altered taste perception.

  13. Aged garlic extract reduces blood pressure in hypertensives: a dose–response trial

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ried, K; Frank, O R; Stocks, N P

    2013-01-01

    Background/objectives: Hypertension affects about 30% of adults worldwide. Garlic has blood pressure-lowering properties and the mechanism of action is biologically plausible. Our trial assessed the effect, dose–response, tolerability and acceptability of different doses of aged garlic extract as an adjunct treatment to existing antihypertensive medication in patients with uncontrolled hypertension. Subjects/methods: A total of 79 general practice patients with uncontrolled systolic hypertension participated in a double-blind randomised placebo-controlled dose–response trial of 12 weeks. Participants were allocated to one of three garlic groups with either of one, two or four capsules daily of aged garlic extract (240/480/960 mg containing 0.6/1.2/2.4 mg of S-allylcysteine) or placebo. Blood pressure was assessed at 4, 8 and 12 weeks and compared with baseline using a mixed-model approach. Tolerability was monitored throughout the trial and acceptability was assessed at 12 weeks by questionnaire. Results: Mean systolic blood pressure was significantly reduced by 11.8±5.4 mm Hg in the garlic-2-capsule group over 12 weeks compared with placebo (P=0.006), and reached borderline significant reduction in the garlic-4-capsule group at 8 weeks (−7.4±4.1 mm Hg, P=0.07). Changes in systolic blood pressure in the garlic-1-capsule group and diastolic blood pressure were not significantly different to placebo. Tolerability, compliance and acceptability were high in all garlic groups (93%) and highest in the groups taking one or two capsules daily. Conclusions: Our trial suggests aged garlic extract to be an effective and tolerable treatment in uncontrolled hypertension, and may be considered as a safe adjunct treatment to conventional antihypertensive therapy. PMID:23169470

  14. Aged garlic extract reduces blood pressure in hypertensives: a dose-response trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ried, K; Frank, O R; Stocks, N P

    2013-01-01

    Hypertension affects about 30% of adults worldwide. Garlic has blood pressure-lowering properties and the mechanism of action is biologically plausible. Our trial assessed the effect, dose-response, tolerability and acceptability of different doses of aged garlic extract as an adjunct treatment to existing antihypertensive medication in patients with uncontrolled hypertension. A total of 79 general practice patients with uncontrolled systolic hypertension participated in a double-blind randomised placebo-controlled dose-response trial of 12 weeks. Participants were allocated to one of three garlic groups with either of one, two or four capsules daily of aged garlic extract (240/480/960 mg containing 0.6/1.2/2.4 mg of S-allylcysteine) or placebo. Blood pressure was assessed at 4, 8 and 12 weeks and compared with baseline using a mixed-model approach. Tolerability was monitored throughout the trial and acceptability was assessed at 12 weeks by questionnaire. Mean systolic blood pressure was significantly reduced by 11.8±5.4 mm Hg in the garlic-2-capsule group over 12 weeks compared with placebo (P=0.006), and reached borderline significant reduction in the garlic-4-capsule group at 8 weeks (-7.4±4.1 mm Hg, P=0.07). Changes in systolic blood pressure in the garlic-1-capsule group and diastolic blood pressure were not significantly different to placebo. Tolerability, compliance and acceptability were high in all garlic groups (93%) and highest in the groups taking one or two capsules daily. Our trial suggests aged garlic extract to be an effective and tolerable treatment in uncontrolled hypertension, and may be considered as a safe adjunct treatment to conventional antihypertensive therapy.

  15. A Comparison of Response Cost and Differential Reinforcement of Other Behavior to Reduce Disruptive Behavior in a Preschool Classroom

    Science.gov (United States)

    Conyers, Carole; Miltenberger, Raymond; Maki, Amber; Barenz, Rebecca; Jurgens, Mandy; Sailer, Angela; Haugen, Meredith; Kopp, Brandon

    2004-01-01

    This study investigated the effectiveness of response cost and differential reinforcement of other behavior (DRO) in reducing the disruptive behaviors of 25 children in a preschool classroom. Using an alternating treatments design, disruptive behavior was reduced when the participants earned tokens for the absence of disruptive behavior (DRO) or…

  16. HUMAN RESPONDING ON RANDOM-INTERVAL SCHEDULES OF RESPONSE-COST PUNISHMENT: THE ROLE OF REDUCED REINFORCEMENT DENSITY

    OpenAIRE

    Pietras, Cynthia J; Brandt, Andrew E; Searcy, Gabriel D

    2010-01-01

    An experiment with adult humans investigated the effects of response-contingent money loss (response-cost punishment) on monetary-reinforced responding. A yoked-control procedure was used to separate the effects on responding of the response-cost contingency from the effects of reduced reinforcement density. Eight adults pressed buttons for money on a three-component multiple reinforcement schedule. During baseline, responding in all components produced money gains according to a random-inter...

  17. Disrupting astrocyte–neuron lactate transfer persistently reduces conditioned responses to cocaine

    KAUST Repository

    Boury-Jamot, B

    2015-10-27

    A central problem in the treatment of drug addiction is the high risk of relapse often precipitated by drug-associated cues. The transfer of glycogen-derived lactate from astrocytes to neurons is required for long-term memory. Whereas blockade of drug memory reconsolidation represents a potential therapeutic strategy, the role of astrocyte–neuron lactate transport in long-term conditioning has received little attention. By infusing an inhibitor of glycogen phosphorylase into the basolateral amygdala of rats, we report that disruption of astrocyte-derived lactate not only transiently impaired the acquisition of a cocaine-induced conditioned place preference but also persistently disrupted an established conditioning. The drug memory was rescued by L-Lactate co-administration through a mechanism requiring the synaptic plasticity-related transcription factor Zif268 and extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) signalling pathway but not the brain-derived neurotrophic factor (Bdnf). The long-term amnesia induced by glycogenolysis inhibition and the concomitant decreased expression of phospho-ERK were both restored with L-Lactate co-administration. These findings reveal a critical role for astrocyte-derived lactate in positive memory formation and highlight a novel amygdala-dependent reconsolidation process, whose disruption may offer a novel therapeutic target to reduce the long-lasting conditioned responses to cocaine.

  18. Barley Sprouts Extract Attenuates Alcoholic Fatty Liver Injury in Mice by Reducing Inflammatory Response

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yun-Hee Lee

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available It has been reported that barley leaves possess beneficial properties such as antioxidant, hypolipidemic, antidepressant, and antidiabetic. Interestingly, barley sprouts contain a high content of saponarin, which showed both anti-inflammatory and antioxidant activities. In this study, we evaluated the effect of barley sprouts on alcohol-induced liver injury mediated by inflammation and oxidative stress. Raw barley sprouts were extracted, and quantitative and qualitative analyses of its components were performed. The mice were fed a liquid alcohol diet with or without barley sprouts for four weeks. Lipopolysaccharide (LPS-stimulated RAW 264.7 cells were used to study the effect of barley sprouts on inflammation. Alcohol intake for four weeks caused liver injury, evidenced by an increase in serum alanine aminotransferase and aspartate aminotransferase activities and tumor necrosis factor (TNF-α levels. The accumulation of lipid in the liver was also significantly induced, whereas the glutathione (GSH level was reduced. Moreover, the inflammation-related gene expression was dramatically increased. All these alcohol-induced changes were effectively prevented by barley sprouts treatment. In particular, pretreatment with barley sprouts significantly blocked inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS and cyclooxygenase (COX-2 expression in LPS-stimulated RAW 264.7. This study suggests that the protective effect of barley sprouts against alcohol-induced liver injury is potentially attributable to its inhibition of the inflammatory response induced by alcohol.

  19. Amine modification of nonporous silica nanoparticles reduces inflammatory response following intratracheal instillation in murine lungs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morris, Angie S; Adamcakova-Dodd, Andrea; Lehman, Sean E; Wongrakpanich, Amaraporn; Thorne, Peter S; Larsen, Sarah C; Salem, Aliasger K

    2016-01-22

    Amorphous silica nanoparticles (NPs) possess unique material properties that make them ideal for many different applications. However, the impact of these materials on human and environmental health needs to be established. We investigated nonporous silica NPs both bare and modified with amine functional groups (3-aminopropyltriethoxysilane (APTES)) in order to evaluate the effect of surface chemistry on biocompatibility. In vitro data showed there to be little to no cytotoxicity in a human lung cancer epithelial cell line (A549) for bare silica NPs and amine-functionalized NPs using doses based on both mass concentration (below 200μg/mL) and exposed total surface area (below 14m(2)/L). To assess lung inflammation, C57BL/6 mice were administered bare or amine-functionalized silica NPs via intra-tracheal instillation. Two doses (0.1 and 0.5mg NPs/mouse) were tested using the in vivo model. At the higher dose used, bare silica NPs elicited a significantly higher inflammatory response, as evidence by increased neutrophils and total protein in bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL) fluid compared to amine-functionalized NPs. From this study, we conclude that functionalization of nonporous silica NPs with APTES molecules reduces murine lung inflammation and improves the overall biocompatibility of the nanomaterial.

  20. Stalk and sucrose yield in response to nitrogen fertilization of sugarcane under reduced tillage

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Caio Fortes

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available The objective of this work was to evaluate the agroindustrial production of sugarcane (millable stalks and sucrose yield after successive nitrogen fertilizations of plant cane and ratoons in a reduced tillage system. The experiment was carried out at Jaboticabal, SP, Brazil, on a Rhodic Eutrustox soil, during four consecutive crop cycles (March 2005 to July 2009. Plant cane treatments consisted of N-urea levels (control, 40, 80, and 120 kg ha-1 N + 120 kg ha-1 P2O5 and K2O in furrow application. In the first and second ratoons, the plant cane plots were subdivided in N-ammonium nitrate treatments (control, 50, 100, and 150 kg ha-1 N + 150 kg ha-1 K2O as top dressing over rows. In the third ratoon, N fertilization was leveled to 100 kg ha-1 in all plots, including controls, to detect residual effects of previous fertilizations on the last crop's cycle. Sugarcane ratoon was mechanically harvested. A weighing truck was used to evaluate stalk yield (TCH, and samples were collected in the field for analysis of sugar content (TSH. Increasing N doses and meteorological conditions promote significant responses in TCH and TSH in cane plant and ratoons, in the average and accumulated yield of the consecutive crop cycles.

  1. THC reduces the anticipatory nucleus accumbens response to reward in subjects with a nicotine addiction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jansma, J M; van Hell, H H; Vanderschuren, L J M J; Bossong, M G; Jager, G; Kahn, R S; Ramsey, N F

    2013-02-26

    Recent evidence has implicated the endocannabinoid (eCB) system in nicotine addiction. The eCB system also has an important role in reward mechanisms, and nicotine addiction has been associated with aberrant reward processing. Motivated by this evidence, we tested the hypothesis that eCB modulation of reward processing is altered in subjects with a nicotine addiction (NAD). For this purpose, we compared reward-related activity in NAD with healthy controls (HC) in a pharmacological magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) study using Δ(9)-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) administration to challenge the eCB system. Eleven HC and 10 NAD participated in a 3-T functional MRI (fMRI) study with a double-blind, cross-over, placebo-controlled design, using a Monetary Incentive Delay (MID) paradigm with three reward levels. Reward activity in the nucleus accumbens (NAcc) and caudate putamen during anticipation and feedback of reward was compared after THC and placebo. fMRI results indicated a significant reduction of reward anticipation activity in the NAcc in NAD after THC administration, which was not present in HC. This is indicated by a significant group by drug by reward interaction. Our data show that THC significantly reduces the NAcc response to monetary reward anticipation in NAD. These results suggest that nicotine addiction is associated with altered eCB modulation of reward processing in the NAcc. This study adds important human data to existing evidence implicating the eCB system in nicotine addiction.

  2. Smokers' responses to advertisements for regular and light cigarettes and potential reduced-exposure tobacco products.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hamilton, William L; Norton, Giulia diStefano; Ouellette, Tammy K; Rhodes, Wiliam M; Kling, Ryan; Connolly, Gregory N

    2004-12-01

    This study examines smokers' responses to advertisements for potentially reduced exposure tobacco products (PREP), light cigarettes, and regular cigarettes. A convenience sample of 600 adult smokers reviewed one actual advertisement for each type of product. Smokers ranked the products on health risk, amount of tar, and carcinogenicity, and identified the messages they perceived the advertisements to convey. Smokers perceived PREP products as having lower health risks (mean = 5.4 on a scale of 1-10) and carcinogens (6.6) than light cigarettes (5.8 and 6.9, respectively, p carcinogen levels than regular cigarettes (8.2 and 8.8, respectively, p tobacco products that are contrary to the scientific evidence. Explicit and implicit advertising messages may be strengthened by the perceived government endorsement. This supports the Institute of Medicine's recommendation to regulate the promotion, advertising, and labeling of PREP tobacco products and light cigarettes. Effective regulation may need to focus on consumer perceptions resulting from advertisements rather than the explicit content of advertising text.

  3. Distinct germination response of endangered and common arable weeds to reduced water potential.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rühl, A T; Eckstein, R L; Otte, A; Donath, T W

    2016-01-01

    Arable weeds are one of the most endangered species groups in Europe. Modern agriculture and intensive land-use management are the main causes of their dramatic decline. However, besides the changes in land use, climate change may further challenge the adaptability of arable weeds. Therefore, we investigated the response pattern of arable weeds to different water potential and temperature regimes during the phase of germination. We expected that endangered arable weeds would be more sensitive to differences in water availability and temperature than common arable weeds. To this end, we set up a climate chamber experiment where we exposed seeds of five familial pairs of common and endangered arable weed species to different temperatures (5/15, 10/20 °C) and water potentials (0.0 to -1.2 MPa). The results revealed a significant relationship between the reaction of arable weed species to water availability and their Red List status. The effects of reduced water availability on total germination, mean germination time and synchrony were significantly stronger in endangered than in common arable weeds. Therefore, global climate change may present a further threat to the survival of endangered arable weed species. © 2015 German Botanical Society and The Royal Botanical Society of the Netherlands.

  4. Fetal alcohol exposure reduces responsiveness of taste nerves and trigeminal chemosensory neurons to ethanol and its flavor components.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Glendinning, John I; Tang, Joyce; Morales Allende, Ana Paula; Bryant, Bruce P; Youngentob, Lisa; Youngentob, Steven L

    2017-08-01

    Fetal alcohol exposure (FAE) leads to increased intake of ethanol in adolescent rats and humans. We asked whether these behavioral changes may be mediated in part by changes in responsiveness of the peripheral taste and oral trigeminal systems. We exposed the experimental rats to ethanol in utero by administering ethanol to dams through a liquid diet; we exposed the control rats to an isocaloric and isonutritive liquid diet. To assess taste responsiveness, we recorded responses of the chorda tympani (CT) and glossopharyngeal (GL) nerves to lingual stimulation with ethanol, quinine, sucrose, and NaCl. To assess trigeminal responsiveness, we measured changes in calcium levels of isolated trigeminal ganglion (TG) neurons during stimulation with ethanol, capsaicin, mustard oil, and KCl. Compared with adolescent control rats, the adolescent experimental rats exhibited diminished CT nerve responses to ethanol, quinine, and sucrose and GL nerve responses to quinine and sucrose. The reductions in taste responsiveness persisted into adulthood for quinine but not for any of the other stimuli. Adolescent experimental rats also exhibited reduced TG neuron responses to ethanol, capsaicin, and mustard oil. The lack of change in responsiveness of the taste nerves to NaCl and the TG neurons to KCl indicates that FAE altered only a subset of the response pathways within each chemosensory system. We propose that FAE reprograms development of the peripheral taste and trigeminal systems in ways that reduce their responsiveness to ethanol and surrogates for its pleasant (i.e., sweet) and unpleasant (i.e., bitterness, oral burning) flavor attributes.NEW & NOTEWORTHY Pregnant mothers are advised to avoid alcohol. This is because even small amounts of alcohol can alter fetal brain development and increase the risk of adolescent alcohol abuse. We asked how fetal alcohol exposure (FAE) produces the latter effect in adolescent rats by measuring responsiveness of taste nerves and trigeminal

  5. Natural and experimental tests of trophic cascades: gray wolves and white-tailed deer in a Great Lakes forest.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Flagel, D G; Belovsky, G E; Beyer, D E

    2016-04-01

    Herbivores can be major drivers of environmental change, altering plant community structure and changing biodiversity through the amount and species of plants consumed. If natural predators can reduce herbivore numbers and/or alter herbivore foraging behavior, then predators may reduce herbivory on sensitive plants, and a trophic cascade will emerge. We have investigated whether gray wolves (Canis lupus) generate such trophic cascades by reducing white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus) herbivory on saplings and rare forbs in a northern mesic forest (Land O' Lakes, WI). Our investigation used an experimental system of deer exclosures in areas of high and low wolf use that allowed us to examine the role that wolf predation may play in reducing deer herbivory through direct reduction in deer numbers or indirectly through changing deer behavior. We found that in areas of high wolf use, deer were 62 % less dense, visit duration was reduced by 82 %, and percentage of time spent foraging was reduced by 43 %; in addition, the proportion of saplings browsed was nearly sevenfold less. Average maple (Acer spp.) sapling height and forb species richness increased 137 and 117 % in areas of high versus low wolf use, respectively. The results of the exclosure experiments revealed that the negative impacts of deer on sapling growth and forb species richness became negligible in high wolf use areas. We conclude that wolves are likely generating trophic cascades which benefit maples and rare forbs through trait-mediated effects on deer herbivory, not through direct predation kills.

  6. Dexamethasone selectively suppresses microglial trophic responses to hippocampal deafferentation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Woods, A G; Poulsen, F R; Gall, C M

    1999-01-01

    hippocampus. Daily dexamethasone injections almost completely blocked increases in insulin-like growth factor-1 messenger RNA content, but did not perturb increases in ciliary neurotrophic factor or basic fibroblast growth factor messenger RNA content, in the deafferented dentate gyrus molecular layer...

  7. Moxonidine into the lateral parabrachial nucleus reduces renal and hormonal responses to cell dehydration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andrade, C A F; Margatho, L O; Andrade-Franzé, G M F; De Luca, L A; Antunes-Rodrigues, J; Menani, J V

    2012-04-19

    The deactivation of the inhibitory mechanisms with injections of moxonidine (α2-adrenoceptor/imidazoline receptor agonist) into the lateral parabrachial nucleus (LPBN) increases hypertonic NaCl intake by intra- or extracellular dehydrated rats. In the present study, we investigated the changes in the urinary sodium and volume, sodium balance, and plasma vasopressin and oxytocin in rats treated with intragastric (i.g.) 2 M NaCl load (2 ml/rat) combined with injections of moxonidine into the LPBN. Male Holtzman rats (n=5-12/group) with stainless steel cannulas implanted bilaterally into LPBN were used. Bilateral injections of moxonidine (0.5 nmol/0.2 μl) into the LPBN decreased i.g. 2 M NaCl-induced diuresis (4.6±0.7 vs. vehicle: 7.4±0.6 ml/120 min) and natriuresis (1.65±0.29 vs. vehicle: 2.53±0.17 mEq/120 min), whereas the previous injection of the α2-adrenoceptor antagonist RX 821002 (10 nmol/0.2 μl) into the LPBN abolished the effects of moxonidine. Moxonidine injected into the LPBN reduced i.g. 2 M NaCl-induced increase in plasma oxytocin and vasopressin (14.6±2.8 and 2.2±0.3 vs. vehicle: 25.7±7 and 4.3±0.7 pg/ml, respectively). Moxonidine injected into the LPBN combined with i.g. 2 M NaCl also increased 0.3 M NaCl intake (7.5±1.7 vs. vehicle: 0.5±0.2 mEq/2 h) and produced positive sodium balance (2.3±1.4 vs. vehicle: -1.2±0.4 mEq/2 h) in rats that had access to water and NaCl. The present results show that LPBN α2-adrenoceptor activation reduces renal and hormonal responses to intracellular dehydration and increases sodium and water intake, which facilitates sodium retention and body fluid volume expansion.

  8. Reducing the number of options on multiple-choice questions: response time, psychometrics and standard setting.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schneid, Stephen D; Armour, Chris; Park, Yoon Soo; Yudkowsky, Rachel; Bordage, Georges

    2014-10-01

    Despite significant evidence supporting the use of three-option multiple-choice questions (MCQs), these are rarely used in written examinations for health professions students. The purpose of this study was to examine the effects of reducing four- and five-option MCQs to three-option MCQs on response times, psychometric characteristics, and absolute standard setting judgements in a pharmacology examination administered to health professions students. We administered two versions of a computerised examination containing 98 MCQs to 38 Year 2 medical students and 39 Year 3 pharmacy students. Four- and five-option MCQs were converted into three-option MCQs to create two versions of the examination. Differences in response time, item difficulty and discrimination, and reliability were evaluated. Medical and pharmacy faculty judges provided three-level Angoff (TLA) ratings for all MCQs for both versions of the examination to allow the assessment of differences in cut scores. Students answered three-option MCQs an average of 5 seconds faster than they answered four- and five-option MCQs (36 seconds versus 41 seconds; p = 0.008). There were no significant differences in item difficulty and discrimination, or test reliability. Overall, the cut scores generated for three-option MCQs using the TLA ratings were 8 percentage points higher (p = 0.04). The use of three-option MCQs in a health professions examination resulted in a time saving equivalent to the completion of 16% more MCQs per 1-hour testing period, which may increase content validity and test score reliability, and minimise construct under-representation. The higher cut scores may result in higher failure rates if an absolute standard setting method, such as the TLA method, is used. The results from this study provide a cautious indication to health professions educators that using three-option MCQs does not threaten validity and may strengthen it by allowing additional MCQs to be tested in a fixed amount

  9. Shift in trophic level of Mediterranean mariculture species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsikliras, Athanassios C; Stergiou, Konstantinos I; Adamopoulos, Nikolaos; Pauly, Daniel; Mente, Eleni

    2014-08-01

    The mean trophic level of the farmed fish species in the Mediterranean has been increasing. We examined the farming-up hypothesis (i.e., the increase in the production of high-trophic-level species) in the Mediterranean by determining the trophic level of the aquafeeds (i.e., what the fish are fed) of 5 species of farmed marine fishes: common dentex (Dentex dentex), common pandora (Pagellus erythrinus), European seabass (Dicentrarchus labrax), gilthead seabream (Sparus aurata), and red porgy (Pagrus sp.). The mean trophic level of aquafeed used in mariculture from 1950 to 2011 was higher (3.93) than the prey farmed fish consume in the wild (3.72) and increased at a faster rate (0.48/decade) compared with that based on their diets in the wild (0.43/decade). Future expected replacement of the fishmeal and oil in aquafeeds by plant materials may reverse the farming-up trend, although there are a number of concerns regarding operational, nutritional, environmental, and economic issues. The farming-up reversal can be achieved in an ecologically friendly manner by facilitating the mariculture of low-trophic-level fishes and by promoting high efficiency in the use of living marine resources in aquafeeds. © 2014 Society for Conservation Biology.

  10. Trophic structure of pelagic species in the northwestern Mediterranean Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Albo-Puigserver, Marta; Navarro, Joan; Coll, Marta; Layman, Craig A.; Palomera, Isabel

    2016-11-01

    Ecological knowledge of food web interactions within pelagic marine communities is often limited, impairing our capabilities to manage these ecologically and economically important marine fish species. Here we used stable isotope analyses to investigate trophic interactions in the pelagic ecosystem of the northwestern Mediterranean Sea during 2012 and 2013. Our results suggest that European sardine, Sardina pilchardus, and anchovy, Engraulis encrasicolus, are consumers located at relatively low levels of the pelagic food web. Unexpectedly, the round sardinella, Sardinella aurita, appeared to be located at a higher trophic level than the other small pelagic fish species, although previous studies found similarity in their diets. Isotope data suggested that trophic niches of species within the genera Trachurus spp. and Scomber spp., were distinct. Atlantic bonito Sarda sarda, European hake Merluccius merluccius and European squid Loligo vulgaris, appeared to feed at higher trophic levels than other species. Despite some intraspecific seasonal variability for some species, community trophic structure appeared relatively stable through the year. These data provide an important step for developing models of food web dynamics in the northwestern Mediterranean Sea.

  11. From neurons to epidemics: How trophic coherence affects spreading processes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klaise, Janis; Johnson, Samuel

    2016-06-01

    Trophic coherence, a measure of the extent to which the nodes of a directed network are organised in levels, has recently been shown to be closely related to many structural and dynamical aspects of complex systems, including graph eigenspectra, the prevalence or absence of feedback cycles, and linear stability. Furthermore, non-trivial trophic structures have been observed in networks of neurons, species, genes, metabolites, cellular signalling, concatenated words, P2P users, and world trade. Here, we consider two simple yet apparently quite different dynamical models—one a susceptible-infected-susceptible epidemic model adapted to include complex contagion and the other an Amari-Hopfield neural network—and show that in both cases the related spreading processes are modulated in similar ways by the trophic coherence of the underlying networks. To do this, we propose a network assembly model which can generate structures with tunable trophic coherence, limiting in either perfectly stratified networks or random graphs. We find that trophic coherence can exert a qualitative change in spreading behaviour, determining whether a pulse of activity will percolate through the entire network or remain confined to a subset of nodes, and whether such activity will quickly die out or endure indefinitely. These results could be important for our understanding of phenomena such as epidemics, rumours, shocks to ecosystems, neuronal avalanches, and many other spreading processes.

  12. Cannabidiol reduces host immune response and prevents cognitive impairments in Wistar rats submitted to pneumococcal meningitis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barichello, Tatiana; Ceretta, Renan A; Generoso, Jaqueline S; Moreira, Ana Paula; Simões, Lutiana R; Comim, Clarissa M; Quevedo, João; Vilela, Márcia Carvalho; Zuardi, Antonio Waldo; Crippa, José A; Teixeira, Antônio Lucio

    2012-12-15

    Pneumococcal meningitis is a life-threatening disease characterized by an acute infection affecting the pia matter, arachnoid and subarachnoid space. The intense inflammatory response is associated with a significant mortality rate and neurologic sequelae, such as, seizures, sensory-motor deficits and impairment of learning and memory. The aim of this study was to evaluate the effects of acute and extended administration of cannabidiol on pro-inflammatory cytokines and behavioral parameters in adult Wistar rats submitted to pneumococcal meningitis. Male Wistar rats underwent a cisterna magna tap and received either 10μl of sterile saline as a placebo or an equivalent volume of S. pneumoniae suspension. Rats subjected to meningitis were treated by intraperitoneal injection with cannabidiol (2.5, 5, or 10mg/kg once or daily for 9 days after meningitis induction) or a placebo. Six hours after meningitis induction, the rats that received one dose were killed and the hippocampus and frontal cortex were obtained to assess cytokines/chemokine and brain-derived neurotrophic factor levels. On the 10th day, the rats were submitted to the inhibitory avoidance task. After the task, the animals were killed and samples from the hippocampus and frontal cortex were obtained. The extended administration of cannabidiol at different doses reduced the TNF-α level in frontal cortex. Prolonged treatment with canabidiol, 10mg/kg, prevented memory impairment in rats with pneumococcal meningitis. Although descriptive, our results demonstrate that cannabidiol has anti-inflammatory effects in pneumococcal meningitis and prevents cognitive sequel.

  13. Reduced inflammatory response in cigarette smoke exposed Mrp1/Mdr1a/1b deficient mice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Postma Dirkje S

    2007-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Tobacco smoke is the principal risk factor for chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD, though the mechanisms of its toxicity are still unclear. The ABC transporters multidrug resistance-associated protein 1 (MRP1 and P-glycoprotein (P-gp/MDR1 extrude a wide variety of toxic substances across cellular membranes and are highly expressed in bronchial epithelium. Their impaired function may contribute to COPD development by diminished detoxification of noxious compounds in cigarette smoke. Methods We examined whether triple knock-out (TKO mice lacking the genes for Mrp1 and Mdr1a/1b are more susceptible to develop COPD features than their wild-type (WT littermates. TKO and WT mice (six per group were exposed to 2 cigarettes twice daily by nose-only exposure or room air for 6 months. Inflammatory infiltrates were analyzed in lung sections, cytokines and chemokines in whole lung homogenates, emphysema by mean linear intercept. Multiple linear regression analysis with an interaction term was used to establish the statistical significances of differences. Results TKO mice had lower levels of interleukin (IL-7, KC (mouse IL-8, IL-12p70, IL-17, TNF-alpha, G-CSF, GM-CSF and MIP-1-alpha than WT mice independent of smoke exposure (P P P Conclusion Mrp1/Mdr1a/1b knock-out mice have a reduced inflammatory response to cigarette smoke. In addition, the expression levels of several cytokines and chemokines were also lower in lungs of Mrp1/Mdr1a/1b knock-out mice independent of smoke exposure. Further studies are required to determine whether dysfunction of MRP1 and/or P-gp contribute to the pathogenesis of COPD.

  14. Loss of VHL in RCC reduces repair and alters cellular response to benzo[a]pyrene

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marten eSchults

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available Mutations of the von Hippel-Lindau (VHL tumor suppressor gene occur in the majority of sporadic renal-cell carcinomas (RCC. Loss of VHL function is associated with stabilization of hypoxia-inducible factor α (HIFα. We and others demonstrated that there is a two-way interaction between the aryl hydrocarbon receptor, which is an important mediator in the metabolic activation and detoxification of carcinogens, and the HIF1-pathway leading to an increased genetic instability when both pathways are simultaneously activated. The aim of this study was to investigate how environmental carcinogens, such as benzo[a]pyrene (BaP, which can be metabolically activated to BaP-7,8-diOH-9,10-epoxide (BPDE play a role in the etiology of renal-cell carcinomas (RCC. We exposed VHL deficient RCC4 cells, in which HIFα is stabilized regardless of oxygen tension, to 0.1µM BaP for 18 hours. The mutagenic BPDE-DNA adduct levels were increased in HIFα stabilized cells. Using qRT-PCR, we demonstrated that absence of VHL significantly induced the mRNA levels of AhR downstream target CYP1A1. Furthermore, HPLC analysis indicated that loss of VHL increased the concentration of BaP-7,8-dihydroxydiol, the pre-cursor metabolite of BPDE. Interestingly, the capacity to repair BPDE-DNA adducts in the HIFα stabilized RCC4 cells, was markedly reduced. Taken together, these data indicate that loss of VHL affects BaP-mediated genotoxic responses in renal-cell carcinoma and decreases repair capacity.

  15. Hepatic AQP9 expression in male rats is reduced in response to PPARα agonist treatment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lebeck, Janne; Cheema, Muhammad Umar; Skowronski, Mariusz T; Nielsen, Søren; Praetorius, Jeppe

    2015-02-01

    The peroxisome proliferator receptor α (PPARα) is a key regulator of the hepatic response to fasting with effects on both lipid and carbohydrate metabolism. A role in hepatic glycerol metabolism has also been found; however, the results are somewhat contradictive. Aquaporin 9 (AQP9) is a pore-forming transmembrane protein that facilitates hepatic uptake of glycerol. Its expression is inversely regulated by insulin in male rodents, with increased expression during fasting. Previous results indicate that PPARα plays a crucial role in the induction of AQP9 mRNA during fasting. In the present study, we use PPARα agonists to explore the effect of PPARα activation on hepatic AQP9 expression and on the abundance of enzymes involved in glycerol metabolism using both in vivo and in vitro systems. In male rats with free access to food, treatment with the PPARα agonist WY 14643 (3 mg·kg(-1)·day(-1)) caused a 50% reduction in hepatic AQP9 abundance with the effect being restricted to AQP9 expressed in periportal hepatocytes. The pharmacological activation of PPARα had no effect on the abundance of GlyK, whereas it caused an increased expression of hepatic GPD1, GPAT1, and L-FABP protein. In WIF-B9 and HepG2 hepatocytes, both WY 14643 and another PPARα agonist GW 7647 reduced the abundance of AQP9 protein. In conclusion, pharmacological PPARα activation results in a marked reduction in the abundance of AQP9 in periportal hepatocytes. Together with the effect on the enzymatic apparatus for glycerol metabolism, our results suggest that PPARα activation in the fed state directs glycerol into glycerolipid synthesis rather than into de novo synthesis of glucose. Copyright © 2015 the American Physiological Society.

  16. Modelling species invasions using thermal and trophic niche dynamics under climate change

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Simone eLibralato

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available Changing marine temperatures modify the distributional ranges of natural populations, but the success of invasion of new areas depends on local physical and ecological conditions. We explore the invasion by thermophilic species and their ecosystem effects by simulating a sea surface temperature increase using a trophodynamic model for the northern Adriatic Sea (NAS, in which thermal and trophic niches are explicitly represented for each thermophilic non-indigenous species and native species. The NAS acts as a cul-de-sac for local species, preventing a further poleward migration as a response to temperature rise. In this situation, model results showed that effects of warming and invasion produced complex, non-linear changes on biomasses but never resulted in a complete overturn of a group of native species and/or a bloom of invasive ones. Despite this, the diversity index stabilizes at increased values after simulating invasion, possibly indicating that in such enclosed systems the establishment of invasive species could represent enrichment in ecosystem structure. In addition, the absence of complete species substitution clearly showed the contribution of resident species towards increasing the resilience, i.e. the capability of the system to cope with invasion without changing substantially. Contrasting scenarios highlighted that changes in ecosystem primary production and species adaptation had secondary effects in ecosystem structure, while results for scenarios with different exploitation levels indicated that fishing can destabilize community structure in these change contexts, e.g. reducing community resilience. The results confirmed the importance of an ecological niche approach to analyze possible effects of invasion and highlighted the complexity of dynamics linked to temperature-driven species invasion’, in terms of both the predicted strength of impacts and the direction of biomass change.

  17. Foraging Activity and Trophic Spectrum of Red Ant Pogonomyrmex barbatus Smith, 1858, in Productivity-Contrasted Microenvironments

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rafael Guzmán-Mendoza

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Foraging strategies can be influenced by many factors such as abundance, availability, and toxicity of the resources. In arid zones, the distribution and productivity of plants also act as additional factors that affect foraging strategies. Twenty colonies of Pogonomyrmex barbatus ants were studied in an arid zone of central Mexico to evaluate the trophic niche breadth in two sites with contrasting productivities in terms of their diversity and amount of resources during two seasons. The results suggest that when the resources are abundant as in the rainy season, the trophic niche breadth is reduced in sites with high productivity and, in the same sites, the trophic niche breadth increases when the resources are limited as in the dry season. In contrast, the trophic niche breadth is similar in both conditions of resource availability (i.e., rainy and dry seasons at sites with low productivity. During the dry season, populations of P. barbatus showed a similar foraging behavior in sites with high and low productivity. Thus, the particular characteristics of a site can significantly affect the foraging strategies of the ants in those environments.

  18. Spatial patterns and predictors of trophic control in marine ecosystems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boyce, Daniel G; Frank, Kenneth T; Worm, Boris; Leggett, William C

    2015-10-01

    A key question in ecology is under which conditions ecosystem structure tends to be controlled by resource availability vs. consumer pressure. Several hypotheses derived from theory, experiments and observational field studies have been advanced, yet a unified explanation remains elusive. Here, we identify common predictors of trophic control in a synthetic analysis of 52 observational field studies conducted within marine ecosystems across the Northern Hemisphere and published between 1951 and 2014. Spatial regression analysis of 45 candidate variables revealed temperature to be the dominant predictor, with unimodal effects on trophic control operating both directly (r(2) = 0.32; P marine ecosystems, and that variation in ocean temperature will affect the trophic structure of marine ecosystems through both direct and indirect mechanisms. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons Ltd/CNRS.

  19. Estimate of the trophic status of subarctic Imandra Lake

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Terent'eva I. A.

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available The object of study is Imandra Lake – the largest reservoir of the Murmansk region. The lake is being influenced by the long-term and multi-factorial activities of mining and ore processing industries, air pollution and energetics. Moreover, the drain of municipal sewage from the large settlements situated on the lake's watershed makes a serious contribution to water pollution. As a result the lake has accumulated a significant amount of pollutants and nutrients that resulted currently in an increase of the toxic load on the lake system. One of the main ecological problems also is the intensification of the anthropogenic eutrophication processes. The aim of this study is to evaluate the current trophic status of Imandra Lake using the trophic index (TSI with the average annual values of the parameters: chlorophyll, total nitrogen, total phosphorus, and total organic carbon and to find the dynamics of these parameters' changes during more than 20-year period. The study of the trophic status of Imandra Lake has been performed for the period 1991–2013 yrs. using the trophic state index developed by Carlson, Kratzer and Bresonik, Dunalska. According to the calculated values of the indexes Bolshaja Imandra Lake corresponds to eutrophic-mesotrophic trophic status, Yokostrovskaya Imandra Lake could be described as mesotrophic. Babinskaja Imandra Lake that subjected to essential nutrient loading is close to the oligotrophic trophic status. However, some parts of Babinskaja Imandra Lake refer to the mesotrophic state due to influence of industrial, household and heated water of the Kola atomic power station. Thus, this part of Imadra Lake could be considered as a meso-oligotrophic status. It has been established that currently nitrogen is a limiting factor for development of algae in Imandra Lake. Based on the mathematical Vollenweider model the critical phosphorus loading values to control such an important nutrient element as phosphorus have been

  20. Elevated temperature and drought interact to reduce parasitoid effectiveness in suppressing hosts.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cecilia M Romo

    Full Text Available Climate change affects the abundance, distribution and activity of natural enemies that are important for suppressing herbivore crop pests. Moreover, higher mean temperatures and increased frequency of climatic extremes are expected to induce different responses across trophic levels, potentially disrupting predator-prey interactions. Using field observations, we examined the response of an aphid host-parasitoid system to variation in temperature. Temperature was positively associated with attack rates by parasitoids, but also with a non-significant trend towards increased attack rates by higher-level hyperparasitoids. Elevated hyperparasitism could partly offset any benefit of climate warming to parasitoids, and would suggest that higher trophic levels may hamper predictions of predator-prey interactions. Additionally, the mechanisms affecting host-parasitoid dynamics were examined using controlled laboratory experiments that simulated both temperature increase and drought. Parasitoid fitness and longevity responded differently when exposed to each climatic variable in isolation, compared to the interaction of both variables at once. Although temperature increase or drought tended to positively affect the ability of parasitoids to control aphid populations, these effects were significantly reversed when the drivers were expressed in concert. Additionally, separate warming and drought treatments reduced parasitoid longevity, and although temperature increased parasitoid emergence success and drought increased offspring production, combined temperature and drought produced the lowest parasitoid emergence. The non-additive effects of different climate drivers, combined with differing responses across trophic levels, suggest that predicting future pest outbreaks will be more challenging than previously imagined.

  1. Frequent ice cream consumption is associated with reduced striatal response to receipt of an ice cream-based milkshake.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burger, Kyle S; Stice, Eric

    2012-04-01

    Weight gain leads to reduced reward-region responsivity to energy-dense food receipt, and consumption of an energy-dense diet compared with an isocaloric, low-energy-density diet leads to reduced dopamine receptors. Furthermore, phasic dopamine signaling to palatable food receipt decreases after repeated intake of that food, which collectively suggests that frequent intake of an energy-dense food may reduce striatal response to receipt of that food. We tested the hypothesis that frequent ice cream consumption would be associated with reduced activation in reward-related brain regions (eg, striatum) in response to receipt of an ice cream-based milkshake and examined the influence of adipose tissue and the specificity of this relation. Healthy-weight adolescents (n = 151) underwent fMRI during receipt of a milkshake and during receipt of a tasteless solution. Percentage body fat, reported food intake, and food craving and liking were assessed. Milkshake receipt robustly activated the striatal regions, yet frequent ice cream consumption was associated with a reduced response to milkshake receipt in these reward-related brain regions. Percentage body fat, total energy intake, percentage of energy from fat and sugar, and intake of other energy-dense foods were not related to the neural response to milkshake receipt. Our results provide novel evidence that frequent consumption of ice cream, independent of body fat, is related to a reduction in reward-region responsivity in humans, paralleling the tolerance observed in drug addiction. Data also imply that intake of a particular energy-dense food results in attenuated reward-region responsivity specifically to that food, which suggests that sensory aspects of eating and reward learning may drive the specificity.

  2. Frequent ice cream consumption is associated with reduced striatal response to receipt of an ice cream–based milkshake123

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stice, Eric

    2012-01-01

    Background: Weight gain leads to reduced reward-region responsivity to energy-dense food receipt, and consumption of an energy-dense diet compared with an isocaloric, low-energy-density diet leads to reduced dopamine receptors. Furthermore, phasic dopamine signaling to palatable food receipt decreases after repeated intake of that food, which collectively suggests that frequent intake of an energy-dense food may reduce striatal response to receipt of that food. Objective: We tested the hypothesis that frequent ice cream consumption would be associated with reduced activation in reward-related brain regions (eg, striatum) in response to receipt of an ice cream–based milkshake and examined the influence of adipose tissue and the specificity of this relation. Design: Healthy-weight adolescents (n = 151) underwent fMRI during receipt of a milkshake and during receipt of a tasteless solution. Percentage body fat, reported food intake, and food craving and liking were assessed. Results: Milkshake receipt robustly activated the striatal regions, yet frequent ice cream consumption was associated with a reduced response to milkshake receipt in these reward-related brain regions. Percentage body fat, total energy intake, percentage of energy from fat and sugar, and intake of other energy-dense foods were not related to the neural response to milkshake receipt. Conclusions: Our results provide novel evidence that frequent consumption of ice cream, independent of body fat, is related to a reduction in reward-region responsivity in humans, paralleling the tolerance observed in drug addiction. Data also imply that intake of a particular energy-dense food results in attenuated reward-region responsivity specifically to that food, which suggests that sensory aspects of eating and reward learning may drive the specificity. PMID:22338036

  3. Inactivation of neuronal function in the amygdaloid region reduces tail artery blood flow alerting responses in conscious rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mohammed, M; Kulasekara, K; De Menezes, R C; Ootsuka, Y; Blessing, W W

    2013-01-03

    Few studies have investigated whether neuronal function in the amygdaloid complex is necessary for the occurrence of the cardiovascular response to natural (unconditioned) environmental threats. In the present investigation in conscious unrestrained Sprague-Dawley rats we inactivated neuronal function in the amygdaloid complex acutely (bilateral muscimol injections) or chronically (unilateral or bilateral ibotenic acid injections) and measured the effect on sudden falls in tail artery blood flow elicited by non-noxious salient stimuli (sympathetic cutaneous vasomotor alerting responses, SCVARs). After acute bilateral injection of vehicle (200nl Ringer's solution) the SCVAR index was 81 ± 2%, indicating that tail blood flow was reduced by 81% in response to the salient stimuli. After acute bilateral injection of muscimol (1 nmol in 200 nl of Ringer's solution) into the amygdaloid complex the SCVAR index was 49 ± 5%, indicating that tail blood flow was reduced by 49% in response to the salient stimuli (pbody with more immediate metabolic requirements.

  4. Design of reduced size long counter with flat response function from few keV to 20 MeV

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mazunga Mohamed

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available In this study, a reduced size neutron long counter with improved response function was designed using SuperMC simulation code. The main parts of the reduced size long counter are 3He proportional counter, cylindrical moderators made of polyethylene, chromium metal converter, neutron absorber material and outer aluminum cover. A 1.5 cm thick layer of chromium metal was embedded into the hydrogen-rich moderator to enhance response of the long counter at high neutron energies. The radius and length of the long counter was reduced to 15 cm and 35 cm, respectively. In this design we managed to obtain a flat response function from a few keV to 20 MeV energy range. The angular response function, determined at 0.5 MeV and 14 MeV neutron energies, confirmed that the reduced size long counter designed in this study is not significantly affected by in-scattered neutrons. The reduced size long counter is suitable for use as a standard transfer instrument for monitoring neutron fluence in mono-energetic neutron fields.

  5. Time-dependent quantum many-body systems. Linear response, electronic transport, and reduced density matrices

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Appel, H.

    2007-05-15

    In part I of this work we present a double-pole approximation (DPA) to the response equations of time-dependent density functional theory (TDDFT). The double-pole approximation provides an exact description of systems with two strongly coupled excitations which are isolated from the rest of the spectrum. In contrast to the traditional single-pole approximation of TDDFT the DPA also yields corrections to the Kohn-Sham oscillator strengths. We also demonstrate how to invert the double-pole solution which allows us to predict matrix elements of the exchange-correlation kernel f{sub xc} from experimental input. We attempt some first steps towards a time-dependent generalization of reduced density matrix functional theory (RDMFT). In part II we derive equations of motion for natural orbitals and occupation numbers. Using the equation of motion for the occupation numbers we show that an adiabatic extension of presently known ground-state functionals of static RDMFT always leads to occupation numbers which are constant in time. From the stationary conditions of the equations of motion for the N-body correlations (correlated parts of the N-body matrices) we derive a new class of ground-state functionals which can be used in static RDMFT. Applications are presented for a one-dimensional model system where the time-dependent many-body Schroedinger equation can be propagated numerically. We use optimal control theory to find optimized laser pulses for transitions in a model for atomic Helium. From the numerically exact correlated wavefunction we extract the exact time evolution of natural orbitals and occupation numbers for (i) laser-driven Helium and (ii) electron-ion scattering. Part III of this work considers time-dependent quantum transport within TDDFT. We present an algorithm for the calculation of extended eigenstates of single-particle Hamiltonians which is especially tailored to a finite-difference discretization of the Schroedinger equation. We consider the

  6. Trophic transference of microplastics under a low exposure scenario: Insights on the likelihood of particle cascading along marine food-webs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santana, M F M; Moreira, F T; Turra, A

    2017-08-15

    Microplastics are emergent pollutants in marine environments, whose risks along food-web still need to be understood. Within this knowledge gap, MPs transference and persistence along trophic levels are key processes. We assessed the potential occurrence of these processes considering a less extreme scenario of exposure than used previously, with microplastics present only in the hemolymph of prey (the mussel Perna perna) and absent in the gut cavity. Predators were the crab Callinectes ornatus and the puffer fish Spheoeroides greeleyi. Transference of microplastics occurred from prey to predators but without evidences of particle persistence in their tissues after 10days of exposure. This suggests a reduced likelihood of trophic cascading of particles and, consequently, a reduced risk of direct impacts of microplastics on higher trophic levels. However, the contact with microplastics along food-webs is still concerning, modulated by the concentration of particles in prey and predators' depuration capacity and rate. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  7. Dissonance-Based Eating Disorder Prevention Program Reduces Reward Region Response to Thin Models; How Actions Shape Valuation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eric Stice

    Full Text Available Research supports the effectiveness of a dissonance-based eating disorder prevention program wherein high-risk young women with body dissatisfaction critique the thin ideal, which reduces pursuit of this ideal, and the theory that dissonance induction contributes to these effects. Based on evidence that dissonance produces attitudinal change by altering neural representation of valuation, we tested whether completing the Body Project would reduce response of brain regions implicated in reward valuation to thin models. Young women with body dissatisfaction were randomized to this intervention or an educational control condition, completing assessments and fMRI scans while viewing images of thin versus average-weight female models at pre and post. Whole brain analyses indicated that, compared to controls, Body Project participants showed greater reductions in caudate response to images of thin versus average-weight models, though participants in the two conditions showed pretest differences in responsivity of other brain regions that might have contributed to this effect. Greater pre-post reductions in caudate and putamen response to thin models correlated with greater reductions in body dissatisfaction. The finding that the Body Project reduces caudate response to thin models provides novel preliminary evidence that this intervention reduces valuation of media images thought to contribute to body dissatisfaction and eating disorders, providing support for the intervention theory by documenting that this intervention alters an objective biological outcome.

  8. Dissonance-Based Eating Disorder Prevention Program Reduces Reward Region Response to Thin Models; How Actions Shape Valuation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stice, Eric; Yokum, Sonja; Waters, Allison

    2015-01-01

    Research supports the effectiveness of a dissonance-based eating disorder prevention program wherein high-risk young women with body dissatisfaction critique the thin ideal, which reduces pursuit of this ideal, and the theory that dissonance induction contributes to these effects. Based on evidence that dissonance produces attitudinal change by altering neural representation of valuation, we tested whether completing the Body Project would reduce response of brain regions implicated in reward valuation to thin models. Young women with body dissatisfaction were randomized to this intervention or an educational control condition, completing assessments and fMRI scans while viewing images of thin versus average-weight female models at pre and post. Whole brain analyses indicated that, compared to controls, Body Project participants showed greater reductions in caudate response to images of thin versus average-weight models, though participants in the two conditions showed pretest differences in responsivity of other brain regions that might have contributed to this effect. Greater pre-post reductions in caudate and putamen response to thin models correlated with greater reductions in body dissatisfaction. The finding that the Body Project reduces caudate response to thin models provides novel preliminary evidence that this intervention reduces valuation of media images thought to contribute to body dissatisfaction and eating disorders, providing support for the intervention theory by documenting that this intervention alters an objective biological outcome.

  9. Effects of Trophic Status on Mercury Methylation Pathways in Peatlands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hines, M. E.; Zhang, L.; Sampath, S.; Hu, R.; Barkay, T.

    2014-12-01

    Methyl mercury (MeHg) is a bioaccumulative toxicant. It was believed to be produced by sulfate (SO4)- and iron- reducing bacteria (SRB and FeRB), but recent studies suggest that organisms that possess the gene cluster (hgcAB) can methylate Hg, which includes other microbial groups besides SRB and FeRB. Many areas known to accumulate high levels of MeHg are freshwater wetlands that lack sufficient electron acceptors to support the production of MeHg. To test the hypothesis that oligotrophic wetlands are able to methylate Hg by pathways that are not respiratory, peat was collected from three wetland sites in Alaska and three in Massachusetts that represented a trophic gradient. We determined rates of gas (CH4, CO2, H2) and LMW organic acid (formate, acetate, propionate, butyrate) formation, and rates of Hg methylation using the short-lived radioisotope 197Hg (half life 2.67 days). Two temperate sites exhibited strong terminal respiration (methanogenesis) and syntrophy, while the Alaskan sites and an oligotrophic temperate site exhibited low rates of both. Primary fermentation was an important process in the latter sites. Hg methylation was most active at the minerotrophic sites that exhibited active syntrophy and methanogenesis. Methylation decreased greatly in the presence of a methanogenic inhibitor and was stimulated by H2 indicating that methanogens and perhaps syntrophs were primary methylators. In the oligotrophic sites, the addition of SO4 stimulated methylation while a SO4 reduction inhibitor decreased methylation. There was no evidence of SO4 reduction in these samples suggesting that methylation was conducted by SRB that were metabolizing via fermentation and not SO4 reduction. While further studies are required to decipher the role of syntrophs including SRB varieties such as Syntrophobacter sp., these results indicate that fermentative bacteria may be able to significantly methylate Hg in wetlands that do not support anaerobic respiration.

  10. Crop model improvement reduces the uncertainty of the response to temperature of multi-model ensembles

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Maiorano, Andrea; Martre, Pierre; Asseng, Senthold

    2017-01-01

    To improve climate change impact estimates and to quantify their uncertainty, multi-model ensembles (MMEs) have been suggested. Model improvements can improve the accuracy of simulations and reduce the uncertainty of climate change impact assessments. Furthermore, they can reduce the number of mo...

  11. Signals from beech (Fagus sylvatica L.) in response to precipitation extremes - flowering induction and reduced foliation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Callesen, Ingeborg

    Reduced foliation in older (but also young) beech (Fagus sylvatica L.) stands was observed in Denmark in the mid 1990ies and culminated with the 1996 summer drought and heat wave. Large differences in the degree of reduced foliation between regions and within stands were observed e.g. reflecting...

  12. Two opposite extremes of adiposity similarly reduce inflammatory response of antigen-induced acute joint inflammation

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Oliveira, M.C.; Silveira, A.L.; Tavares, L.P.; Rodrigues, D.F.; Loo, F.A.J. van de; Sousa, L.P.; Teixeira, M.M.; Amaral, F.A.; Ferreira, A.V.

    2017-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: Acute inflammation is a normal response of tissue to an injury. During this process, inflammatory mediators are produced and metabolic alterations occur. Adipose tissue is metabolically activated, and upon food consumption, it disrupts the inflammatory response. However, little is known a

  13. Reducing Response Time Bounds for DAG-Based Task Systems on Heterogeneous Multicore Platforms

    Science.gov (United States)

    2016-01-01

    Har- tig. Response-time analysis of parallel fork-join workloads with real- time constraints. In 25th ECRTS, 2013. [2] R. Bajaj and D. Agrawal...University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, NC, 2006. [11] G. Elliott, N. Kim, J. Erickson, C. Liu, and J. Anderson. Minimizing response times of automotive

  14. Comparative ecosystem trophic structure of three U.S. mid-Atlantic estuaries

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Mark E. Monaco; Robert E. Ulanowicz

    1997-01-01

    Quantitative networks of trophic exchanges offer the potential to compare food webs from neighboring ecosystems in order to ascertain whether large differences and similarities exist in trophic structure and function...

  15. Predator effects on a detritus-based food web are primarily mediated by non-trophic interactions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Majdi, Nabil; Boiché, Anatole; Traunspurger, Walter; Lecerf, Antoine

    2014-07-01

    Predator effects on ecosystems can extend far beyond their prey and are often not solely lethally transmitted. Change in prey traits in response to predation risk can have important repercussions on community assembly and key ecosystem processes (i.e. trait-mediated indirect effects). In addition, some predators themselves alter habitat structure or nutrient cycling through ecological engineering effects. Tracking these non-trophic pathways is thus an important, yet challenging task to gain a better grasp of the functional role of predators. Multiple lines of evidence suggest that, in detritus-based food webs, non-trophic interactions may prevail over purely trophic interactions in determining predator effects on plant litter decomposition. This hypothesis was tested in a headwater stream by modulating the density of a flatworm predator (Polycelis felina) in enclosures containing oak (Quercus robur) leaf litter exposed to natural colonization by small invertebrates and microbial decomposers. Causal path modelling was used to infer how predator effects propagated through the food web. Flatworms accelerated litter decomposition through positive effects on microbial decomposers. The biomass of prey and non-prey invertebrates was not negatively affected by flatworms, suggesting that net predator effect on litter decomposition was primarily determined by non-trophic interactions. Flatworms enhanced the deposition and retention of fine sediments on leaf surface, thereby improving leaf colonization by invertebrates - most of which having strong affinities with interstitial habitats. This predator-induced improvement of habitat availability was attributed to the sticky nature of the mucus that flatworms secrete in copious amount while foraging. Results of path analyses further indicated that this bottom-up ecological engineering effect was as powerful as the top-down effect on invertebrate prey. Our findings suggest that predators have the potential to affect substantially

  16. Introspective responses to cues and motivation to reduce cigarette smoking influence state and behavioral responses to cue exposure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Veilleux, Jennifer C; Skinner, Kayla D

    2016-09-01

    In the current study, we aimed to extend smoking cue-reactivity research by evaluating delay discounting as an outcome of cigarette cue exposure. We also separated introspection in response to cues (e.g., self-reporting craving and affect) from cue exposure alone, to determine if introspection changes behavioral responses to cigarette cues. Finally, we included measures of quit motivation and resistance to smoking to assess motivational influences on cue exposure. Smokers were invited to participate in an online cue-reactivity study. Participants were randomly assigned to view smoking images or neutral images, and were randomized to respond to cues with either craving and affect questions (e.g., introspection) or filler questions. Following cue exposure, participants completed a delay discounting task and then reported state affect, craving, and resistance to smoking, as well as an assessment of quit motivation. We found that after controlling for trait impulsivity, participants who introspected on craving and affect showed higher delay discounting, irrespective of cue type, but we found no effect of response condition on subsequent craving (e.g., craving reactivity). We also found that motivation to quit interacted with experimental conditions to predict state craving and state resistance to smoking. Although asking about craving during cue exposure did not increase later craving, it resulted in greater delaying of discounted rewards. Overall, our findings suggest the need to further assess the implications of introspection and motivation on behavioral outcomes of cue exposure.

  17. Indirect effects of otter trawling on the condition and trophic level of Nephrops and flatfish in the Kattegat

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hiddink, Jan Geert; Balestrin, Stephen; Moranta, Joan

    in the Kattegat (Sweden and Denmark). The results show that the abundance and body size of Nephrops was much higher in the fully closed areas, whereas that of the flatfish was less affected. The condition and trophic level for Nephrops were highest on intensively trawled areas suggesting that trawling reduces......The fishing gear used in bottom trawl fisheries cause mortality of benthic invertebrates and this can decrease the long-term availability of prey to exploited fish species by reducing the abundance of benthic invertebrates. Alternatively, low trawling levels could increase food production...... the condition (as weight-atlength) and trophic level of the fish Pleuronectes platessa, Limanda limanda, Hippoglossoides platessoides and the crustacean Nephrops norvegicus in an area with strong variation in commercial otter-trawling effort owing to the presence of MPAs with different levels of protection...

  18. Ocean Acidification Affects the Phyto-Zoo Plankton Trophic Transfer Efficiency.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cripps, Gemma; Flynn, Kevin J; Lindeque, Penelope K

    2016-01-01

    The critical role played by copepods in ocean ecology and biogeochemistry warrants an understanding of how these animals may respond to ocean acidification (OA). Whilst an appreciation of the potential direct effects of OA, due to elevated pCO2, on copepods is improving, little is known about the indirect impacts acting via bottom-up (food quality) effects. We assessed, for the first time, the chronic effects of direct and/or indirect exposures to elevated pCO2 on the behaviour, vital rates, chemical and biochemical stoichiometry of the calanoid copepod Acartia tonsa. Bottom-up effects of elevated pCO2 caused species-specific biochemical changes to the phytoplanktonic feed, which adversely affected copepod population structure and decreased recruitment by 30%. The direct impact of elevated pCO2 caused gender-specific respiratory responses in A.tonsa adults, stimulating an enhanced respiration rate in males (> 2-fold), and a suppressed respiratory response in females when coupled with indirect elevated pCO2 exposures. Under the combined indirect+direct exposure, carbon trophic transfer efficiency from phytoplankton-to-zooplankton declined to < 50% of control populations, with a commensurate decrease in recruitment. For the first time an explicit role was demonstrated for biochemical stoichiometry in shaping copepod trophic dynamics. The altered biochemical composition of the CO2-exposed prey affected the biochemical stoichiometry of the copepods, which could have ramifications for production of higher tropic levels, notably fisheries. Our work indicates that the control of phytoplankton and the support of higher trophic levels involving copepods have clear potential to be adversely affected under future OA scenarios.

  19. Ocean Acidification Affects the Phyto-Zoo Plankton Trophic Transfer Efficiency

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cripps, Gemma; Flynn, Kevin J.; Lindeque, Penelope K.

    2016-01-01

    The critical role played by copepods in ocean ecology and biogeochemistry warrants an understanding of how these animals may respond to ocean acidification (OA). Whilst an appreciation of the potential direct effects of OA, due to elevated pCO2, on copepods is improving, little is known about the indirect impacts acting via bottom-up (food quality) effects. We assessed, for the first time, the chronic effects of direct and/or indirect exposures to elevated pCO2 on the behaviour, vital rates, chemical and biochemical stoichiometry of the calanoid copepod Acartia tonsa. Bottom-up effects of elevated pCO2 caused species-specific biochemical changes to the phytoplanktonic feed, which adversely affected copepod population structure and decreased recruitment by 30%. The direct impact of elevated pCO2 caused gender-specific respiratory responses in A.tonsa adults, stimulating an enhanced respiration rate in males (> 2-fold), and a suppressed respiratory response in females when coupled with indirect elevated pCO2 exposures. Under the combined indirect+direct exposure, carbon trophic transfer efficiency from phytoplankton-to-zooplankton declined to < 50% of control populations, with a commensurate decrease in recruitment. For the first time an explicit role was demonstrated for biochemical stoichiometry in shaping copepod trophic dynamics. The altered biochemical composition of the CO2-exposed prey affected the biochemical stoichiometry of the copepods, which could have ramifications for production of higher tropic levels, notably fisheries. Our work indicates that the control of phytoplankton and the support of higher trophic levels involving copepods have clear potential to be adversely affected under future OA scenarios. PMID:27082737

  20. Shift in a large river fish assemblage: body-size and trophic structure dynamics.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kyle J Broadway

    Full Text Available As the intensity and speed of environmental change increase at both local and global scales it is imperative that we gain a better understanding of the ecological implications of community shifts. While there has been substantial progress toward understanding the drivers and subsequent responses of community change (e.g. lake trophic state, the ecological impacts of food web changes are far less understood. We analyzed Wabash River fish assemblage data collected from 1974-2008, to evaluate temporal variation in body-size structure and functional group composition. Two parameters derived from annual community size-spectra were our major response variables: (1 the regression slope is an index of ecological efficiency and predator-prey biomass ratios, and (2 spectral elevation (regression midpoint height is a proxy for food web capacity. We detected a large assemblage shift, over at least a seven year period, defined by dramatic changes in abundance (measured as catch-per-unit-effort of the dominant functional feeding groups among two time periods; from an assemblage dominated by planktivore-omnivores to benthic invertivores. There was a concurrent increase in ecological efficiency (slopes increased over time following the shift associated with an increase in large-bodied low trophic level fish. Food web capacity remained relatively stable with no clear temporal trends. Thus, increased ecological efficiency occurred simultaneous to a compensatory response that shifted biomass among functional feeding groups.

  1. The reduced cochlear output and the failure to adapt the central auditory response causes tinnitus in noise exposed rats.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lukas Rüttiger

    Full Text Available Tinnitus is proposed to be caused by decreased central input from the cochlea, followed by increased spontaneous and evoked subcortical activity that is interpreted as compensation for increased responsiveness of central auditory circuits. We compared equally noise exposed rats separated into groups with and without tinnitus for differences in brain responsiveness relative to the degree of deafferentation in the periphery. We analyzed (1 the number of CtBP2/RIBEYE-positive particles in ribbon synapses of the inner hair cell (IHC as a measure for deafferentation; (2 the fine structure of the amplitudes of auditory brainstem responses (ABR reflecting differences in sound responses following decreased auditory nerve activity and (3 the expression of the activity-regulated gene Arc in the auditory cortex (AC to identify long-lasting central activity following sensory deprivation. Following moderate trauma, 30% of animals exhibited tinnitus, similar to the tinnitus prevalence among hearing impaired humans. Although both tinnitus and no-tinnitus animals exhibited a reduced ABR wave I amplitude (generated by primary auditory nerve fibers, IHCs ribbon loss and high-frequency hearing impairment was more severe in tinnitus animals, associated with significantly reduced amplitudes of the more centrally generated wave IV and V and less intense staining of Arc mRNA and protein in the AC. The observed severe IHCs ribbon loss, the minimal restoration of ABR wave size, and reduced cortical Arc expression suggest that tinnitus is linked to a failure to adapt central circuits to reduced cochlear input.

  2. Attenuated ventricular β-adrenergic response and reduced repolarization reserve in a rabbit model of chronic heart failure

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nissen, Jakob Dahl; Thomsen, Morten Bækgaard; Bentzen, Bo Hjorth

    2012-01-01

    mortality but profound structural, functional, and electrical remodeling and compare with nonpaced controls. Pacing increased heart weight/body weight ratio and decreased left ventricular fractional shortening in tachypaced only. Electrocardiogram recordings during sinus rhythm revealed QTc prolongation...... remodeling but very low mortality. Isokalemic and hyperkalemic responses indicate downregulation of functional IKs. Increased short-term variability during hypokalemia unmasks a reduced repolarization reserve....

  3. Presence of a dog reduces subjective but not physiological stress responses to an analog trauma

    OpenAIRE

    2014-01-01

    Dogs are known to have stress and anxiety reducing effects. Several studies have shown that dogs are able to calm people during cognitive and performance stressors. Recently, therapy dogs have been proposed as a treatment adjunct for post-traumatic stress disorder patients. In this study we aimed to investigate, whether dogs also have anxiety- and stress reducing effect during “traumatic stressors.” 80 healthy female participants were randomly assigned to one of four conditions. They were exp...

  4. Responses of Aquatic Saproxylic Macroinvertebrates to Reduced-Impact Logging in Central Amazonia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roque, F O; Escarpinati, S C; Valente-Neto, F; Hamada, N

    2015-08-01

    Reduced-impact logging (RIL) is an alternative land use because it reduces damage to forest cover in comparison with clear-cut practices. However, management practices adopted in RIL can affect wood availability and, consequently, fauna associated with dead wood during part of their life cycle (saproxylic). In this study, we evaluated whether aquatic saproxylic macroinvertebrates are affected by reduced-impact logging in Central Amazonia. We selected six streams in areas under reduced-impacted logging and six in primary forest areas and collected submerged woody debris. We did not find any differences in water pH, conductivity, and wood availability between reduced-impacted forest and primary forest streams. We found 248 saproxylic aquatic macroinvertebrates belonging to 37 taxa. We found five wood specialist (Dryops, Lutrochus, Stenochironomus, Oukuriella, and Endotribelos) and 32 generalists, totalling 98 and 150 individuals, respectively. In general, our results show that reduced-impact logging does not affect richness, abundance, and composition of saproxylic macroinvertebrates. The main explanation for this pattern is that management practices do not change important macroinvertebrate niche dimensions, including wood availability and the water's chemical and physical variables. Thus, controlled logging, such as applied in the area of the Central Amazonian streams studied, opens a new prospect for insect conservation and commercial exploitation of wood, which is not possible when clear-cut practices are adopted.

  5. Methylmercury Exposure Reduces the Auditory Brainstem Response of Zebra Finches (Taeniopygia guttata )

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Wolf, Sarah E; Swaddle, John P; Cristol, Daniel A; Buchser, William J

    2017-01-01

    ...) by studying their auditory brainstem responses (ABRs). Zebra finches exposed to mercury exhibited elevated hearing thresholds, decreased amplitudes, and longer latencies in the ABR, the first evidence of mercury-induced hearing impairment in birds...

  6. Reduced antibody responses against Plasmodium falciparum vaccine candidate antigens in the presence of Trichuris trichiura

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Esen, Meral; Mordmüller, Benjamin; de Salazar, Pablo Martinez

    2012-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Helminth infections are highly prevalent in the tropics and may have an effect on immune responses to vaccines due to their immunomodulatory effect. The prevalence of helminth infections in young children, the target group for malaria and most other vaccines, is high. Therefore we...... assessed the influence of helminth infection on vaccine-induced immune responses in a phase I clinical trial of the malaria vaccine candidate GMZ2. METHODS: Twenty Gabonese preschool-age children were vaccinated with GMZ2, a blood stage malaria vaccine candidate. Humoral immune response against the vaccine...... antigens and parasitological status were assessed. Vaccine-specific antibody concentrations and memory B-cell numbers were compared in worm infected and non-infected participants. RESULTS: Antibody response to GMZ2 was 3.4-fold (95% confidence interval: 1.6, 7.4) higher in Trichuris trichiura negative...

  7. Extremism reduces conflict arousal and increases values affirmation in response to meaning violations

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Sleegers, W.W.A.; Proulx, T.; van Beest, I.

    2015-01-01

    In the social psychological threat-compensation literature, there is an apparent contradiction whereby relatively extreme beliefs both decrease markers of physiological arousal following meaning violations, and increase the values affirmation behaviors understood as a palliative responses to this

  8. Extremism reduces conflict arousal and increases values affirmation in response to meaning violations

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Sleegers, W.W.A.; Proulx, T.; van Beest, I.

    2015-01-01

    In the social psychological threat-compensation literature, there is an apparent contradiction whereby relatively extreme beliefs both decrease markers of physiological arousal following meaning violations, and increase the values affirmation behaviors understood as a palliative responses to this ar

  9. Reduced complement activation during cardiopulmonary bypass does not affect the postoperative acute phase response

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van den Goor, J.; Nieuwland, R.; van den Brink, A.; van Oeveren, W.; Rutten, 27818; Tijssen, J.; Eijsman, L.; Rutten, P

    2004-01-01

    Objective: In the present study the relationship was evaluated between perioperative inflammation and the postoperative acute phase response in patients undergoing elective coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG) assisted by cardiopulmonary bypass (CPB). CPB circuits contained either non-coated-

  10. Acknowledging individual responsibility while emphasizing social determinants in narratives to promote obesity-reducing public policy: a randomized experiment.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jeff Niederdeppe

    Full Text Available This study tests whether policy narratives designed to increase support for obesity-reducing public policies should explicitly acknowledge individual responsibility while emphasizing social, physical, and economic (social determinants of obesity. We use a web-based, randomized experiment with a nationally representative sample of American adults (n = 718 to test hypotheses derived from theory and research on narrative persuasion. Respondents exposed to narratives that acknowledged individual responsibility while emphasizing obesity's social determinants were less likely to engage in counterargument and felt more empathy for the story's main character than those exposed to a message that did not acknowledge individual responsibility. Counterarguing and affective empathy fully mediated the relationship between message condition and support for policies to reduce rates of obesity. Failure to acknowledge individual responsibility in narratives emphasizing social determinants of obesity may undermine the persuasiveness of policy narratives. Omitting information about individual responsibility, a strongly-held American value, invites the public to engage in counterargument about the narratives and reduces feelings of empathy for a character that experiences the challenges and benefits of social determinants of obesity.

  11. Acknowledging Individual Responsibility while Emphasizing Social Determinants in Narratives to Promote Obesity-Reducing Public Policy: A Randomized Experiment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Niederdeppe, Jeff; Roh, Sungjong; Shapiro, Michael A.

    2015-01-01

    This study tests whether policy narratives designed to increase support for obesity-reducing public policies should explicitly acknowledge individual responsibility while emphasizing social, physical, and economic (social) determinants of obesity. We use a web-based, randomized experiment with a nationally representative sample of American adults (n = 718) to test hypotheses derived from theory and research on narrative persuasion. Respondents exposed to narratives that acknowledged individual responsibility while emphasizing obesity’s social determinants were less likely to engage in counterargument and felt more empathy for the story’s main character than those exposed to a message that did not acknowledge individual responsibility. Counterarguing and affective empathy fully mediated the relationship between message condition and support for policies to reduce rates of obesity. Failure to acknowledge individual responsibility in narratives emphasizing social determinants of obesity may undermine the persuasiveness of policy narratives. Omitting information about individual responsibility, a strongly-held American value, invites the public to engage in counterargument about the narratives and reduces feelings of empathy for a character that experiences the challenges and benefits of social determinants of obesity. PMID:25706743

  12. Acknowledging individual responsibility while emphasizing social determinants in narratives to promote obesity-reducing public policy: a randomized experiment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Niederdeppe, Jeff; Roh, Sungjong; Shapiro, Michael A

    2015-01-01

    This study tests whether policy narratives designed to increase support for obesity-reducing public policies should explicitly acknowledge individual responsibility while emphasizing social, physical, and economic (social) determinants of obesity. We use a web-based, randomized experiment with a nationally representative sample of American adults (n = 718) to test hypotheses derived from theory and research on narrative persuasion. Respondents exposed to narratives that acknowledged individual responsibility while emphasizing obesity's social determinants were less likely to engage in counterargument and felt more empathy for the story's main character than those exposed to a message that did not acknowledge individual responsibility. Counterarguing and affective empathy fully mediated the relationship between message condition and support for policies to reduce rates of obesity. Failure to acknowledge individual responsibility in narratives emphasizing social determinants of obesity may undermine the persuasiveness of policy narratives. Omitting information about individual responsibility, a strongly-held American value, invites the public to engage in counterargument about the narratives and reduces feelings of empathy for a character that experiences the challenges and benefits of social determinants of obesity.

  13. Uzu mutation in barley (Hordeum vulgare L.) reduces the leaf unrolling response to brassinolide.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Honda, Ichiro; Zeniya, Haruko; Yoneyama, Koichi; Chono, Makiko; Kaneko, Shigenobu; Watanabe, Yoshiaki

    2003-05-01

    A sensitive method to examine the brassinolide (BL) response of barley (Hordeum vulgare L.) using dark-grown leaf segments was established based on the known method for wheat. BL responses of 53 dwarf isogenic lines of barley were examined, and two lines were found having a uzu gene that doesn't respond significantly. These results indicate that uzu dwarfism may be caused by the non-responding character to BL.

  14. Hypoglycemia during moderate intensity exercise reduces counterregulatory responses to subsequent hypoglycemia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cade, W Todd; Khoury, Nadia; Nelson, Suzanne; Shackleford, Angela; Semenkovich, Katherine; Krauss, Melissa J; Arbeláez, Ana María

    2016-09-01

    Hypoglycemia, which occurs commonly during and following exercise in people with diabetes, is thought to be due to attenuated counterregulation in the setting of therapeutic insulin excess. To better understand the pathophysiology of counterregulation, we aimed to determine if dextrose administration to maintain euglycemia during moderate intensity exercise alters the attenuation of counterregulatory responses to subsequent hypoglycemia in healthy adults : Counterregulatory responses to hypoglycemia were assessed in 18 healthy adults after bed rest and following exercise with (n = 9) and without (n = 9) dextrose infusion. Responses were measured during a stepped euglycemic-hypoglycemic clamp 24 h after either bed rest or two 90-min bouts of exercise at 70% peak oxygen uptake : Hypoglycemia occurred during the second bout of exercise without dextrose infusion. Plasma glucagon and epinephrine responses to stepped hypoglycemia after antecedent exercise without dextrose infusion were significantly lower at the 45 mg/dL glycemic level compared to after bed rest. However, no attenuation of the counterregulatory responses to hypoglycemia was evident after antecedent exercise when dextrose was infused. This study suggests that the attenuation of the counterregulatory responses during hypoglycemia after exercise is likely due to the hypoglycemia that occurs during moderate prolonged exercise and not solely due to exercise or its intensity.

  15. Mesoscale eddies are oases for higher trophic marine life

    KAUST Repository

    Godø, Olav R.

    2012-01-17

    Mesoscale eddies stimulate biological production in the ocean, but knowledge of energy transfers to higher trophic levels within eddies remains fragmented and not quantified. Increasing the knowledge base is constrained by the inability of traditional sampling methods to adequately sample biological processes at the spatio-temporal scales at which they occur. By combining satellite and acoustic observations over spatial scales of 10 s of km horizontally and 100 s of m vertically, supported by hydrographical and biological sampling we show that anticyclonic eddies shape distribution and density of marine life from the surface to bathyal depths. Fish feed along density structures of eddies, demonstrating that eddies catalyze energy transfer across trophic levels. Eddies create attractive pelagic habitats, analogous to oases in the desert, for higher trophic level aquatic organisms through enhanced 3-D motion that accumulates and redistributes biomass, contributing to overall bioproduction in the ocean. Integrating multidisciplinary observation methodologies promoted a new understanding of biophysical interaction in mesoscale eddies. Our findings emphasize the impact of eddies on the patchiness of biomass in the sea and demonstrate that they provide rich feeding habitat for higher trophic marine life. 2012 God et al.

  16. The effects of spatial scale on trophic interactions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Koppel, J. van de; Bardgett, R.D.; Bengtsson, J.; Rodriguez-Barrueco, C.; Rietkerk, M.G.; Wassen, M.J.; Wolters, V.

    2005-01-01

    Food chain models have dominated empirical studies of trophic interactions in the past decades, and have lead to important insights into the factors that control ecological communities. Despite the importance of food chain models in instigating ecological investigations, many empirical studies still

  17. Assessing Trophic Position and Mercury Accumulation in Sanpping Turtles

    Science.gov (United States)

    This study determined the trophic position and the total mercury concentrations of snapping turtles (Chelydra serpentina) captured from 26 freshwater sites in Rhode Island. Turtles were captured in baited wire cages, and a non-lethal sampling technique was used in which tips of ...

  18. Trophic structure and biomass distribution on two East Cape rocky ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    1980-01-12

    Jan 12, 1980 ... Trophic structure and biomass distribution on two. East Cape rocky shores ... consist of sandy beaches with rocky shores restricted mainly to the area .... Figures 1 and 2, a simple energy flow diagram has been constructed for ...

  19. Trophic position of coexisting krill species: a stable isotope approach

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Agersted, Mette Dalgaard; Bode, Antonio; Nielsen, Torkel Gissel

    2014-01-01

    Four krill species with overlapping functional biology coexist in Greenland waters. Here, we used stable isotopes to investigate and discuss their trophic role and mode of coexistence. Bulk carbon (δ13C) and nitrogen (δ15N) stable isotope analyses of Thysanoessa longicaudata, T. inermis, T. rasch...

  20. Reduced subjective response to acute ethanol administration among young men with a broad bipolar phenotype.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yip, Sarah W; Doherty, Joanne; Wakeley, Judi; Saunders, Kate; Tzagarakis, Charidimos; de Wit, Harriet; Goodwin, Guy M; Rogers, Robert D

    2012-07-01

    Elevated lifetime prevalence rates of alcohol use disorders (AUDs) are a feature of bipolar disorder (BD). Individuals at-risk for AUDs exhibit blunted subjective responses to alcohol (low levels of response), which may represent a biomarker for AUDs. Thus, individuals at-risk for BD may exhibit low responses to alcohol. Participants were 20 unmedicated adult males who reported high rates of hypomanic experiences (bipolar phenotype participants; BPPs), aged 18 to 21 years, and 20 healthy controls matched on age, gender, IQ, BMI, and weekly alcohol intake. Subjective and pharmacokinetic responses to acute alcohol (0.8 g/kg) vs placebo administration were collected in a randomized, double-blind, cross-over, placebo-controlled, within-subjects design. BPP participants reported significantly lower subjective intoxication effects ('feel high': F=14.2, p=0.001; 'feel effects': F=8.1, p=0.008) across time, but did not differ in their pharmacokinetic, stimulant, or sedative responses. Paradoxically, however, the BPP participants reported significantly higher expectations of the positive effects of alcohol than controls. Our results suggest that unmedicated young males with previous hypomanic experiences exhibit diminished subjective responses to alcohol. These blunted alcohol responses are not attributable to differences in weekly alcohol intake, pharmacokinetic effects (eg, absorption rates), or familial risk of AUDs. These observations suggest that the dampened intoxication may contribute to the increased rates of alcohol misuse in young people at-risk for BD, and suggest possible shared etiological factors in the development of AUDs and BD.

  1. Optimization of linear-logarithmic CMOS image sensor using a photogate and a cascode MOSFET for reducing pixel response variation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bae, Myunghan; Choi, Byoung-Soo; Kim, Sang-Hwan; Lee, Jimin; Oh, Chang-Woo; Shin, Jang-Kyoo

    2017-02-01

    Recently, CMOS image sensors (CISs) have become more and more complex because they require high-performances such as wide dynamic range, low-noise, high-speed operation, high-resolution and so on. First of all, wide dynamic range (WDR) is the first requirement for high-performance CIS. Several techniques have been proposed to improve the dynamic range. Although logarithmic pixel can achieve wide dynamic range, it leads to a poor signal-to-noise ratio due to small output swings. Furthermore, the fixed pattern noise of logarithmic pixel is significantly greater compared with other CISs. In this paper, we propose an optimized linear-logarithmic pixel. Compared to a conventional 3-transistor active pixel sensor structure, the proposed linear-logarithmic pixel is using a photogate and a cascode MOSFET in addition. The photogate which is surrounding a photodiode carries out change of sensitivity in the linear response and thus increases the dynamic range. The logarithmic response is caused by a cascode MOSFET. Although the dynamic range of the pixel has been improved, output curves of each pixel were not uniform. In general, as the number of devices increases in the pixel, pixel response variation is more pronounced. Hence, we optimized the linear-logarithmic pixel structure to minimize the pixel response variation. We applied a hard reset method and an optimized cascode MOSFET to the proposed pixel for reducing pixel response variation. Unlike the conventional reset operation, a hard reset using a p-type MOSFET fixes the voltage of each pixel to the same voltage. This reduces non-uniformity of the response in the linear response. The optimized cascode MOSFET achieves less variation in the logarithmic response. We have verified that the optimized pixel shows more uniform response than the conventional pixel, by both simulation and experiment.

  2. Epstein-Barr virus but not cytomegalovirus is associated with reduced vaccine antibody responses in Gambian infants.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Beth Holder

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Epstein-Barr virus (EBV and cytomegalovirus (CMV are persistent herpesviruses that have various immunomodulatory effects on their hosts. Both viruses are usually acquired in infancy in Sub-Saharan Africa, a region where childhood vaccines are less effective than in high income settings. To establish whether there is an association between these two observations, we tested the hypothesis that infection with one or both viruses modulate antibody responses to the T-cell independent meningococcal polysaccharide vaccine and the T-cell dependent measles vaccines. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Infection with EBV and CMV was diagnosed by the presence of virus-specific IgM in the peripheral blood or by the presence of IgG at higher levels than that found in umbilical cord blood. Anti-meningococcus IgG and IgM were quantified by ELISA. Anti-measles antibody responses were quantified by haemagglutinin antibody inhibition assay. Infants infected with EBV had reduced IgG and IgM antibody responses to meningococcal polysaccharides and to measles vaccine. Infection with CMV alone predicted no changes in the response to meningococcal polysaccharide. While CMV alone had no discernable effect on the antibody response to measles, the response of infants infected with both CMV and EBV was similar to that of infants infected with neither, suggesting that the effects of CMV infection countered the effects of EBV on measles antibody responses. CONCLUSIONS: The results of this exploratory study indicate that infection with EBV is associated with reduced antibody responses to polysaccharides and to measles vaccine, but suggest that the response to T-cell dependent antigens such as measles haemagglutinin may be restored by infection with CMV.

  3. Intergroup relationships do not reduce racial bias in empathic neural responses to pain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Contreras-Huerta, Luis Sebastian; Hielscher, Emily; Sherwell, Chase S; Rens, Natalie; Cunnington, Ross

    2014-11-01

    Perceiving the pain of others activates similar neural structures to those involved in the direct experience of pain, including sensory and affective-motivational areas. Empathic responses can be modulated by race, such that stronger neural activation is elicited by the perception of pain in people of the same race compared with another race. In the present study, we aimed to identify when racial bias occurs in the time course of neural empathic responses to pain. We also investigated whether group affiliation could modulate the race effect. Using the minimal group paradigm, we assigned participants to one of two mixed-race teams. We examined event-related potentials from participants when viewing members of their own and the other team receiving painful or non-painful touch. We identified a significant racial bias in early ERP components at N1 over frontal electrodes, where Painful stimuli elicited a greater negative shift relative to Non-Painful stimuli in response to own race faces only. A long latency empathic response was also found at P3, where there was significant differentiation between Painful and Non-Painful stimuli regardless of Race or Group. There was no evidence that empathy-related brain activity was modulated by minimal group manipulation. These results support a model of empathy for pain that consists of early, automatic bias towards own-race empathic responses and a later top-down cognitive evaluation that does not differentiate between races and may ultimately lead to unbiased behaviour.

  4. Trophic ecomorphology of Siluriformes (Pisces, Osteichthyes from a tropical stream

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    JPA Pagotto

    Full Text Available The present study analysed the relationship between morphology and trophic structure of Siluriformes (Pisces, Osteichthyes from the Caracu Stream (22º 45' S and 53º 15' W, a tributary of the Paraná River (Brazil. Sampling was carried out at three sites using electrofishing, and two species of Loricariidae and four of Heptapteridae were obtained. A cluster analysis revealed the presence of three trophic guilds (detritivores, insectivores and omnivores. Principal components analysis demonstrated the segregation of two ecomorphotypes: at one extreme there were the detritivores (Loricariidae with morphological structures that are fundamental in allowing them to fix themselves to substrates characterised by rushing torrents, thus permitting them to graze on the detritus and organic materials encrusted on the substrate; at the other extreme of the gradient there were the insectivores and omnivores (Heptapteridae, with morphological characteristics that promote superior performance in the exploitation of structurally complex habitats with low current velocity, colonised by insects and plants. Canonical discriminant analysis revealed an ecomorphological divergence between insectivores, which have morphological structures that permit them to capture prey in small spaces among rocks, and omnivores, which have a more compressed body and tend to explore food items deposited in marginal backwater zones. Mantel tests showed that trophic structure was significantly related to the body shape of a species, independently of the phylogenetic history, indicating that, in this case, there was an ecomorphotype for each trophic guild. Therefore, the present study demonstrated that the Siluriformes of the Caracu Stream were ecomorphologically structured and that morphology can be applied as an additional tool in predicting the trophic structure of this group.

  5. X-ray-induced bystander responses reduce spontaneous mutations in V79 cells

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maeda, Munetoshi; Kobayashi, Katsumi; Matsumoto, Hideki; Usami, Noriko; Tomita, Masanori

    2013-01-01

    The potential for carcinogenic risks is increased by radiation-induced bystander responses; these responses are the biological effects in unirradiated cells that receive signals from the neighboring irradiated cells. Bystander responses have attracted attention in modern radiobiology because they are characterized by non-linear responses to low-dose radiation. We used a synchrotron X-ray microbeam irradiation system developed at the Photon Factory, High Energy Accelerator Research Organization, KEK, and showed that nitric oxide (NO)-mediated bystander cell death increased biphasically in a dose-dependent manner. Here, we irradiated five cell nuclei using 10 × 10 µm2 5.35 keV X-ray beams and then measured the mutation frequency at the hypoxanthine-guanosine phosphoribosyl transferase (HPRT) locus in bystander cells. The mutation frequency with the null radiation dose was 2.6 × 10–5 (background level), and the frequency decreased to 5.3 × 10–6 with a dose of approximately 1 Gy (absorbed dose in the nucleus of irradiated cells). At high doses, the mutation frequency returned to the background level. A similar biphasic dose-response effect was observed for bystander cell death. Furthermore, we found that incubation with 2-(4-carboxyphenyl)-4,4,5,5-tetramethylimidazoline-1-oxyl-3-oxide (carboxy-PTIO), a specific scavenger of NO, suppressed not only the biphasic increase in bystander cell death but also the biphasic reduction in mutation frequency of bystander cells. These results indicate that the increase in bystander cell death involves mechanisms that suppress mutagenesis. This study has thus shown that radiation-induced bystander responses could affect processes that protect the cell against naturally occurring alterations such as mutations. PMID:23660275

  6. Shifting phenology and abundance under experimental warming alters trophic relationships and plant reproductive capacity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Yinzhan; Reich, Peter B; Li, Guoyong; Sun, Shucun

    2011-06-01

    Phenological mismatches due to climate change may have important ecological consequences. In a three-year study, phenological shifts due to experimental warming markedly altered trophic relationships between plants and insect herbivores, causing a dramatic decline of reproductive capacity for one of the plant species. In a Tibetan meadow, the gentian (Gentiana formosa) typically flowers after the peak larva density of a noctuid moth (Melanchra pisi) that primarily feeds on a dominant forb (anemone, Anemone trullifolia var. linearis). However, artificial warming of approximately 1.5 degrees C advanced gentian flower phenology and anemone vegetative phenology by a week, but delayed moth larvae emergence by two weeks. The warming increased larval density 10-fold, but decreased anemone density by 30%. The phenological and density shifts under warmed conditions resulted in the insect larvae feeding substantially on the gentian flowers and ovules; there was approximately 100-fold more damage in warmed than in unwarmed chambers. This radically increased trophic connection reduced gentian plant reproduction and likely contributed to its reduced abundance in the warmed chambers.

  7. Responses by earthworms to reduced tillage in herbicide tolerant maize and Bt maize cropping systems

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Krogh, P. H.; Griffiths, B.; Demsar, D.

    2007-01-01

    -toxin producing transgenic maize line MON810 was studied for 1 year. At a Danish study site, Foulum (Jutland), one year of Bt corn was followed by 2 years of herbicide tolerant corn. At the French study site the most prominent effects observed were due to the tillage method where RT significantly reduced...

  8. Response to consumer demand for reduced-fat foods; multi-functional fat replacers

    Science.gov (United States)

    The excessive dietary fat intake can result in health problems such as obesity and heart-related diseases, resulting in increased consumer demand for reduced fat foods. A number of food ingredients with fat-like functions have been developed as fat alternatives in the food industry. Especially, so...

  9. Metformin attenuates hyperoxia-induced lung injury in neonatal rats by reducing the inflammatory response.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Xueyu; Walther, Frans J; Sengers, Rozemarijn M A; Laghmani, El Houari; Salam, Asma; Folkerts, Gert; Pera, Tonio; Wagenaar, Gerry T M

    2015-08-01

    Because therapeutic options are lacking for bronchopulmonary dysplasia (BPD), there is an urgent medical need to discover novel targets/drugs to treat this neonatal chronic lung disease. Metformin, a drug commonly used to lower blood glucose in type 2 diabetes patients, may be a novel therapeutic option for BPD by reducing pulmonary inflammation and fibrosis and improving vascularization. We investigated the therapeutic potential of daily treatment with 25 and 100 mg/kg metformin, injected subcutaneously in neonatal Wistar rats with severe experimental BPD, induced by continuous exposure to 100% oxygen for 10 days. Parameters investigated included survival, lung and heart histopathology, pulmonary fibrin and collagen deposition, vascular leakage, right ventricular hypertrophy, and differential mRNA expression in the lungs of key genes involved in BPD pathogenesis, including inflammation, coagulation, and alveolar development. After daily metformin treatment rat pups with experimental BPD had reduced mortality, alveolar septum thickness, lung inflammation, and fibrosis, demonstrated by a reduced influx of macrophages and neutrophils and hyperoxia-induced collagen III and fibrin deposition (25 mg/kg), as well as improved vascularization (100 mg/kg) compared with control treatment. However, metformin did not ameliorate alveolar enlargement, small arteriole wall thickening, vascular alveolar leakage, and right ventricular hypertrophy. In conclusion metformin prolongs survival and attenuates pulmonary injury by reducing pulmonary inflammation, coagulation, and fibrosis but does not affect alveolar development or prevent pulmonary arterial hypertension and right ventricular hypertrophy in neonatal rats with severe hyperoxia-induced experimental BPD.

  10. Avian response to tidal freshwater habitat creation by controlled reduced tide system

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Beauchard, O.; Jacobs, S.; Ysebaert, T.; Meire, P.

    2013-01-01

    Human activities have caused extensive loss of estuarine wetlands, and the restoration of functional habitats remains a challenging task given several physical constraints in strongly embanked estuaries. In the Schelde estuary (Belgium), a new tidal marsh restoration technique, Controlled Reduced Ti

  11. Plant volatiles induced by herbivore egg deposition affect insects of different trophic levels.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nina E Fatouros

    Full Text Available Plants release volatiles induced by herbivore feeding that may affect the diversity and composition of plant-associated arthropod communities. However, the specificity and role of plant volatiles induced during the early phase of attack, i.e. egg deposition by herbivorous insects, and their consequences on insects of different trophic levels remain poorly explored. In olfactometer and wind tunnel set-ups, we investigated behavioural responses of a specialist cabbage butterfly (Pieris brassicae and two of its parasitic wasps (Trichogramma brassicae and Cotesia glomerata to volatiles of a wild crucifer (Brassica nigra induced by oviposition of the specialist butterfly and an additional generalist moth (Mamestra brassicae. Gravid butterflies were repelled by volatiles from plants induced by cabbage white butterfly eggs, probably as a means of avoiding competition, whereas both parasitic wasp species were attracted. In contrast, volatiles from plants induced by eggs of the generalist moth did neither repel nor attract any of the tested community members. Analysis of the plant's volatile metabolomic profile by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry and the structure of the plant-egg interface by scanning electron microscopy confirmed that the plant responds differently to egg deposition by the two lepidopteran species. Our findings imply that prior to actual feeding damage, egg deposition can induce specific plant responses that significantly influence various members of higher trophic levels.

  12. Plant volatiles induced by herbivore egg deposition affect insects of different trophic levels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fatouros, Nina E; Lucas-Barbosa, Dani; Weldegergis, Berhane T; Pashalidou, Foteini G; van Loon, Joop J A; Dicke, Marcel; Harvey, Jeffrey A; Gols, Rieta; Huigens, Martinus E

    2012-01-01

    Plants release volatiles induced by herbivore feeding that may affect the diversity and composition of plant-associated arthropod communities. However, the specificity and role of plant volatiles induced during the early phase of attack, i.e. egg deposition by herbivorous insects, and their consequences on insects of different trophic levels remain poorly explored. In olfactometer and wind tunnel set-ups, we investigated behavioural responses of a specialist cabbage butterfly (Pieris brassicae) and two of its parasitic wasps (Trichogramma brassicae and Cotesia glomerata) to volatiles of a wild crucifer (Brassica nigra) induced by oviposition of the specialist butterfly and an additional generalist moth (Mamestra brassicae). Gravid butterflies were repelled by volatiles from plants induced by cabbage white butterfly eggs, probably as a means of avoiding competition, whereas both parasitic wasp species were attracted. In contrast, volatiles from plants induced by eggs of the generalist moth did neither repel nor attract any of the tested community members. Analysis of the plant's volatile metabolomic profile by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry and the structure of the plant-egg interface by scanning electron microscopy confirmed that the plant responds differently to egg deposition by the two lepidopteran species. Our findings imply that prior to actual feeding damage, egg deposition can induce specific plant responses that significantly influence various members of higher trophic levels.

  13. Predator-prey dynamics driven by feedback between functionally diverse trophic levels.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Katrin Tirok

    Full Text Available Neglecting the naturally existing functional diversity of communities and the resulting potential to respond to altered conditions may strongly reduce the realism and predictive power of ecological models. We therefore propose and study a predator-prey model that describes mutual feedback via species shifts in both predator and prey, using a dynamic trait approach. Species compositions of the two trophic levels were described by mean functional traits--prey edibility and predator food-selectivity--and functional diversities by the variances. Altered edibility triggered shifts in food-selectivity so that consumers continuously respond to the present prey composition, and vice versa. This trait-mediated feedback mechanism resulted in a complex dynamic behavior with ongoing oscillations in the mean trait values, reflecting continuous reorganization of the trophic levels. The feedback was only possible if sufficient functional diversity was present in both trophic levels. Functional diversity was internally maintained on the prey level as no niche existed in our system, which was ideal under any composition of the predator level due to the trade-offs between edibility, growth and carrying capacity. The predators were only subject to one trade-off between food-selectivity and grazing ability and in the absence of immigration, one predator type became abundant, i.e., functional diversity declined to zero. In the lack of functional diversity the system showed the same dynamics as conventional models of predator-prey interactions ignoring the potential for shifts in species composition. This way, our study identified the crucial role of trade-offs and their shape in physiological and ecological traits for preserving diversity.

  14. Predator-prey dynamics driven by feedback between functionally diverse trophic levels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tirok, Katrin; Bauer, Barbara; Wirtz, Kai; Gaedke, Ursula

    2011-01-01

    Neglecting the naturally existing functional diversity of communities and the resulting potential to respond to altered conditions may strongly reduce the realism and predictive power of ecological models. We therefore propose and study a predator-prey model that describes mutual feedback via species shifts in both predator and prey, using a dynamic trait approach. Species compositions of the two trophic levels were described by mean functional traits--prey edibility and predator food-selectivity--and functional diversities by the variances. Altered edibility triggered shifts in food-selectivity so that consumers continuously respond to the present prey composition, and vice versa. This trait-mediated feedback mechanism resulted in a complex dynamic behavior with ongoing oscillations in the mean trait values, reflecting continuous reorganization of the trophic levels. The feedback was only possible if sufficient functional diversity was present in both trophic levels. Functional diversity was internally maintained on the prey level as no niche existed in our system, which was ideal under any composition of the predator level due to the trade-offs between edibility, growth and carrying capacity. The predators were only subject to one trade-off between food-selectivity and grazing ability and in the absence of immigration, one predator type became abundant, i.e., functional diversity declined to zero. In the lack of functional diversity the system showed the same dynamics as conventional models of predator-prey interactions ignoring the potential for shifts in species composition. This way, our study identified the crucial role of trade-offs and their shape in physiological and ecological traits for preserving diversity.

  15. Trophic mismatch and its effects on the growth of young in an Arctic herbivore.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Doiron, Madeleine; Gauthier, Gilles; Lévesque, Esther

    2015-12-01

    In highly seasonal environments, timing of breeding of organisms is typically set to coincide with the period of highest resource availability. However, breeding phenology may not change at a rate sufficient to keep up with rapid changes in the environment in the wake of climate change. The lack of synchrony between the phenology of consumers and that of their resources can lead to a phenomenon called trophic mismatch, which may have important consequences on the reproductive success of herbivores. We analyzed long-term data (1991-2010) on climate, plant phenology and the reproduction of a long-distance Arctic migrant, the greater snow goose (Chen caerulescens atlantica), in order to examine the effects of mismatched reproduction on the growth of young. We found that geese are only partially able to adjust their breeding phenology to compensate for annual changes in the timing of high-quality food plants, leading to mismatches of up to 20 days between the two. The peak of nitrogen concentration in plants, an index of their nutritive quality for goslings, occurred earlier in warm springs with an early snow melt. Likewise, mismatch between hatch dates of young and date of peak nitrogen was more important in years with early snow melt. Gosling body mass and structural size at fledging was reduced when trophic mismatch was high, particularly when the difference between date of peak nitrogen concentration and hatching was >9 days. Our results support the hypothesis that trophic mismatch can negatively affect the fitness of Arctic herbivores and that this is likely to be exacerbated by rising global temperatures.

  16. Adaptive immune responses to booster vaccination against yellow fever virus are much reduced compared to those after primary vaccination

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kongsgaard, Michael; Bassi, Maria Rosaria; Rasmussen, Michael

    2017-01-01

    vaccination is deemed to confer life-long immune protection. Here, we have examined humoral (neutralizing antibody) and cellular (CD8 and CD4 T cell) immune responses in primary and booster vaccinees (the latter spanning 8 to 36 years after primary vaccination). After primary vaccination, we observed strong...... cellular immune responses with T cell activation peaking ≈2 weeks and subsiding to background levels ≈ 4 weeks post-vaccination. The number of antigen-specific CD8+ T cells declined over the following years. In >90% of vaccinees, in vitro expandable T cells could still be detected >10 years post-vaccination....... Although most vaccinees responded to a booster vaccination, both the humoral and cellular immune responses observed following booster vaccination were strikingly reduced compared to primary responses. This suggests that pre-existing immunity efficiently controls booster inoculums of YF-17D. In a situation...

  17. The compatible solute ectoine reduces the exacerbating effect of environmental model particles on the immune response of the airways.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Unfried, Klaus; Kroker, Matthias; Autengruber, Andrea; Gotić, Marijan; Sydlik, Ulrich

    2014-01-01

    Exposure of humans to particulate air pollution has been correlated with the incidence and aggravation of allergic airway diseases. In predisposed individuals, inhalation of environmental particles can lead to an exacerbation of immune responses. Previous studies demonstrated a beneficial effect of the compatible solute ectoine on lung inflammation in rats exposed to carbon nanoparticles (CNP) as a model of environmental particle exposure. In the current study we investigated the effect of such a treatment on airway inflammation in a mouse allergy model. Ectoine in nonsensitized animals significantly reduced the neutrophilic lung inflammation after CNP exposure. This effect was accompanied by a reduction of inflammatory factors in the bronchoalveolar lavage. Reduced IL-6 levels in the serum also indicate the effects of ectoine on systemic inflammation. In sensitized animals, an aggravation of the immune response was observed when animals were exposed to CNP prior to antigen provocation. The coadministration of ectoine together with the particles significantly reduced this exacerbation. The data indicate the role of neutrophilic lung inflammation in the exacerbation of allergic airway responses. Moreover, the data suggest to use ectoine as a preventive treatment to avoid the exacerbation of allergic airway responses induced by environmental air pollution.

  18. The Compatible Solute Ectoine Reduces the Exacerbating Effect of Environmental Model Particles on the Immune Response of the Airways

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Klaus Unfried

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Exposure of humans to particulate air pollution has been correlated with the incidence and aggravation of allergic airway diseases. In predisposed individuals, inhalation of environmental particles can lead to an exacerbation of immune responses. Previous studies demonstrated a beneficial effect of the compatible solute ectoine on lung inflammation in rats exposed to carbon nanoparticles (CNP as a model of environmental particle exposure. In the current study we investigated the effect of such a treatment on airway inflammation in a mouse allergy model. Ectoine in nonsensitized animals significantly reduced the neutrophilic lung inflammation after CNP exposure. This effect was accompanied by a reduction of inflammatory factors in the bronchoalveolar lavage. Reduced IL-6 levels in the serum also indicate the effects of ectoine on systemic inflammation. In sensitized animals, an aggravation of the immune response was observed when animals were exposed to CNP prior to antigen provocation. The coadministration of ectoine together with the particles significantly reduced this exacerbation. The data indicate the role of neutrophilic lung inflammation in the exacerbation of allergic airway responses. Moreover, the data suggest to use ectoine as a preventive treatment to avoid the exacerbation of allergic airway responses induced by environmental air pollution.

  19. Low Lifetime Stress Exposure Is Associated with Reduced Stimulus-Response Memory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goldfarb, Elizabeth V.; Shields, Grant S.; Daw, Nathaniel D.; Slavich, George M.; Phelps, Elizabeth A.

    2017-01-01

    Exposure to stress throughout life can cumulatively influence later health, even among young adults. The negative effects of high cumulative stress exposure are well-known, and a shift from episodic to stimulus-response memory has been proposed to underlie forms of psychopathology that are related to high lifetime stress. At the other extreme,…

  20. Obesity in asthma : more neutrophilic inflammation as a possible explanation for a reduced treatment response

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Telenga, E. D.; Tideman, S. W.; Kerstjens, H. A. M.; ten Hacken, N. H. T.; Timens, W.; Postma, D. S.; van den Berge, M.

    2012-01-01

    Background The incidence of asthma and obesity is increasing worldwide, and reports suggest that obese patients have more severe asthma. We investigated whether obese asthma patients have more severe airway obstruction and airway hyper-responsiveness and a different type of airway inflammation than

  1. Reduced postprandial GLP-1 responses in women with gestational diabetes mellitus

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bonde, L; Vilsbøll, T; Nielsen, T

    2013-01-01

    AIM: We investigated postprandial glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) responses in pregnant women with and without gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM) and again following delivery when normal glucose tolerance (NGT) was re-established. METHODS: Eleven women with GDM [plasma glucose (PG) concentration...

  2. Authoritarian parenting predicts reduced electrocortical response to observed adolescent offspring rewards.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Levinson, Amanda R; Speed, Brittany C; Nelson, Brady; Bress, Jennifer N; Hajcak, Greg

    2017-03-01

    Parenting styles are robust predictors of offspring outcomes, yet little is known about their neural underpinnings. In this study, 44 parent-adolescent dyads (Mage of adolescent = 12.9) completed a laboratory guessing task while EEG was continuously recorded. In the task, each pair member received feedback about their own monetary wins and losses and also observed the monetary wins and losses of the other member of the pair. We examined the association between self-reported parenting style and parents' electrophysiological responses to watching their adolescent winning and losing money, dubbed the observational Reward Positivity (RewP) and observational feedback negativity (FN), respectively. Self-reported authoritarian parenting predicted reductions in parents' observational RewP but not FN. This predictive relationship remained after adjusting for sex of both participants, parents' responsiveness to their own wins, and parental psychopathology. 'Exploratory analyses found that permissive parenting was associated with a blunting of the adolescents' response to their parents' losses'. These findings suggest that parents' rapid neural responses to their child's successes may relate to the harsh parenting behaviors associated with authoritarian parenting. © The Author (2016). Published by Oxford University Press. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  3. Administration of perioperative penicillin reduces postoperative serum amyloid A response in horses being castrated standing

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Busk, Peter; Jacobsen, Stine; Martinussen, Torben

    2010-01-01

    Objectives: To compare postoperative inflammatory responses in horses administered perioperative procaine penicillin and those not administered penicillin using acute phase protein serum amyloid A (SAA) as a marker of inflammation. Study Design: Randomized clinical trial. Animals: Stallions (n = 50...

  4. Arachidonic acid reduces the stress response of gilthead seabream Sparus aurata L.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Anholt, R.D. van; Spanings, F.A.T.; Koven, W.M.; Nixon, O.; Wendelaar Bonga, S.E.

    2004-01-01

    In this study the influence of the dietary level of the fatty acid arachidonic acid (ArA, 20:4n-6) was determined on the acute stress response and osmoregulation of adult gilthead seabream Sparus aurata L. Seabream were fed a diet containing either 0.9% or 2.4% of total fatty acids as ArA for 18 day

  5. Reduced preabsorptive insulin response in aged rats : differential effects of amphetamine and arginine-vasopressin

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Buwalda, B.; Strubbe, J.H.; Bohus, B.

    1991-01-01

    The experiments presented here have been designed to investigate whether the age-related attenuation of the vagal reactivity to emotional stressors and its modulation by amphetamine (Amph) or arginine-vasopressin (AVP) can be generalized for other physiological response patterns. We therefore studie

  6. Cigarette smoking leads to reduced relaxant responses of the cutaneous microcirculation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Edvinsson, M.L.; Andersson, S.E.; Xu, C.B.

    2008-01-01

    . The vasodilator response to the iontophorectic administration of acetylcholine (ACh), acting via an endothelial mechanism, and sodium nitroprusside (SNP), and acting via a smooth muscle mechanism were studied. The study population consisted of 17 nonsmokers and 17 current smokers (mean age 64+/-2 years, 13...

  7. Arachidonic acid reduces the stress response of gilthead seabream Sparus aurata L.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Anholt, R.D. van; Spanings, F.A.T.; Koven, W.M.; Nixon, O.; Wendelaar Bonga, S.E.

    2004-01-01

    In this study the influence of the dietary level of the fatty acid arachidonic acid (ArA, 20:4n-6) was determined on the acute stress response and osmoregulation of adult gilthead seabream Sparus aurata L. Seabream were fed a diet containing either 0.9% or 2.4% of total fatty acids as ArA for 18

  8. Evidence for a trophic cascade on rocky reefs following sea star mass mortality in British Columbia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jessica A. Schultz

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Echinoderm population collapses, driven by disease outbreaks and climatic events, may be important drivers of population dynamics, ecological shifts and biodiversity. The northeast Pacific recently experienced a mass mortality of sea stars. In Howe Sound, British Columbia, the sunflower star Pycnopodia helianthoides—a previously abundant predator of bottom-dwelling invertebrates—began to show signs of a wasting syndrome in early September 2013, and dense aggregations disappeared from many sites in a matter of weeks. Here, we assess changes in subtidal community composition by comparing the abundance of fish, invertebrates and macroalgae at 20 sites in Howe Sound before and after the 2013 sea star mortality to evaluate evidence for a trophic cascade. We observed changes in the abundance of several species after the sea star mortality, most notably a four-fold increase in the number of green sea urchins, Strongylocentrotus droebachiensis, and a significant decline in kelp cover, which are together consistent with a trophic cascade. Qualitative data on the abundance of sunflower stars and green urchins from a citizen science database show that the patterns of echinoderm abundance detected at our study sites reflected wider local trends. The trophic cascade evident at the scale of Howe Sound was observed at half of the study sites. It remains unclear whether the urchin response was triggered directly, via a reduction in urchin mortality, or indirectly, via a shift in urchin distribution into areas previously occupied by the predatory sea stars. Understanding the ecological implications of sudden and extreme population declines may further elucidate the role of echinoderms in temperate seas, and provide insight into the resilience of marine ecosystems to biological disturbances.

  9. Evidence for a trophic cascade on rocky reefs following sea star mass mortality in British Columbia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cloutier, Ryan N.; Côté, Isabelle M.

    2016-01-01

    Echinoderm population collapses, driven by disease outbreaks and climatic events, may be important drivers of population dynamics, ecological shifts and biodiversity. The northeast Pacific recently experienced a mass mortality of sea stars. In Howe Sound, British Columbia, the sunflower star Pycnopodia helianthoides—a previously abundant predator of bottom-dwelling invertebrates—began to show signs of a wasting syndrome in early September 2013, and dense aggregations disappeared from many sites in a matter of weeks. Here, we assess changes in subtidal community composition by comparing the abundance of fish, invertebrates and macroalgae at 20 sites in Howe Sound before and after the 2013 sea star mortality to evaluate evidence for a trophic cascade. We observed changes in the abundance of several species after the sea star mortality, most notably a four-fold increase in the number of green sea urchins, Strongylocentrotus droebachiensis, and a significant decline in kelp cover, which are together consistent with a trophic cascade. Qualitative data on the abundance of sunflower stars and green urchins from a citizen science database show that the patterns of echinoderm abundance detected at our study sites reflected wider local trends. The trophic cascade evident at the scale of Howe Sound was observed at half of the study sites. It remains unclear whether the urchin response was triggered directly, via a reduction in urchin mortality, or indirectly, via a shift in urchin distribution into areas previously occupied by the predatory sea stars. Understanding the ecological implications of sudden and extreme population declines may further elucidate the role of echinoderms in temperate seas, and provide insight into the resilience of marine ecosystems to biological disturbances. PMID:27168988

  10. Inhibition of predator attraction to kairomones by non-host plant volatiles for herbivores: a bypass-trophic signal.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Qing-He Zhang

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Insect predators and parasitoids exploit attractive chemical signals from lower trophic levels as kairomones to locate their herbivore prey and hosts. We hypothesized that specific chemical cues from prey non-hosts and non-habitats, which are not part of the trophic chain, are also recognized by predators and would inhibit attraction to the host/prey kairomone signals. To test our hypothesis, we studied the olfactory physiology and behavior of a predaceous beetle, Thanasimus formicarius (L. (Coleoptera: Cleridae, in relation to specific angiosperm plant volatiles, which are non-host volatiles (NHV for its conifer-feeding bark beetle prey. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Olfactory detection in the clerid was confirmed by gas chromatography coupled to electroantennographic detection (GC-EAD for a subset of NHV components. Among NHV, we identified two strongly antennally active molecules, 3-octanol and 1-octen-3-ol. We tested the potential inhibition of the combination of these two NHV on the walking and flight responses of the clerid to known kairomonal attractants such as synthetic mixtures of bark beetle (Ips spp. aggregation pheromone components (cis-verbenol, ipsdienol, and E-myrcenol combined with conifer (Picea and Pinus spp. monoterpenes (alpha-pinene, terpinolene, and Delta(3-carene. There was a strong inhibitory effect, both in the laboratory (effect size d = -3.2, walking bioassay and in the field (d = -1.0, flight trapping. This is the first report of combining antennal detection (GC-EAD and behavioral responses to identify semiochemical molecules that bypass the trophic system, signaling habitat information rather than food related information. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Our results, along with recent reports on hymenopteran parasitoids and coleopteran predators, suggest that some NHV chemicals for herbivores are part of specific behavioral signals for the higher trophic level and not part of a background noise. Such bypass-trophic

  11. Comparison of trophic factors' expression between paralyzed and recovering muscles after facial nerve injury. A quantitative analysis in time course.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grosheva, Maria; Nohroudi, Klaus; Schwarz, Alisa; Rink, Svenja; Bendella, Habib; Sarikcioglu, Levent; Klimaschewski, Lars; Gordon, Tessa; Angelov, Doychin N

    2016-05-01

    After peripheral nerve injury, recovery of motor performance negatively correlates with the poly-innervation of neuromuscular junctions (NMJ) due to excessive sprouting of the terminal Schwann cells. Denervated muscles produce short-range diffusible sprouting stimuli, of which some are neurotrophic factors. Based on recent data that vibrissal whisking is restored perfectly during facial nerve regeneration in blind rats from the Sprague Dawley (SD)/RCS strain, we compared the expression of brain derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), fibroblast growth factor-2 (FGF2), insulin growth factors 1 and 2 (IGF1, IGF2) and nerve growth factor (NGF) between SD/RCS and SD-rats with normal vision but poor recovery of whisking function after facial nerve injury. To establish which trophic factors might be responsible for proper NMJ-reinnervation, the transected facial nerve was surgically repaired (facial-facial anastomosis, FFA) for subsequent analysis of mRNA and proteins expressed in the levator labii superioris muscle. A complicated time course of expression included (1) a late rise in BDNF protein that followed earlier elevated gene expression, (2) an early increase in FGF2 and IGF2 protein after 2 days with sustained gene expression, (3) reduced IGF1 protein at 28 days coincident with decline of raised mRNA levels to baseline, and (4) reduced NGF protein between 2 and 14 days with maintained gene expression found in blind rats but not the rats with normal vision. These findings suggest that recovery of motor function after peripheral nerve injury is due, at least in part, to a complex regulation of lesion-associated neurotrophic factors and cytokines in denervated muscles. The increase of FGF-2 protein and concomittant decrease of NGF (with no significant changes in BDNF or IGF levels) during the first week following FFA in SD/RCS blind rats possibly prevents the distal branching of regenerating axons resulting in reduced poly-innervation of motor endplates.

  12. A Reduced-Order Model for Evaluating the Dynamic Response of Multilayer Plates to Impulsive Loads

    Science.gov (United States)

    2016-04-12

    distribution is unlimited SAE INTERNATIONAL • Motivation • Technical Approach • Reduced Order Model (ROM) • Validation – by Spectrum Finite Element ...also be paramount factors for Army vehicles in order for faster transport, greater fuel conservation, higher payload and higher mobility. • Develop...Matrix • The departure wave vectors ?̃?∗ and ?̃? contain same elements but in different order. It can be expressed in equivalence through a global

  13. Aluminum sulfate significantly reduces the skin test response to common allergens in sensitized patients

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Grier Thomas J

    2006-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Avoidance of allergens is still recommended as the first and best way to prevent allergic illnesses and their comorbid diseases. Despite a variety of attempts there has been very limited success in the area of environmental control of allergic disease. Our objective was to identify a non-invasive, non-pharmacological method to reduce indoor allergen loads in atopic persons' homes and public environments. We employed a novel in vivo approach to examine the possibility of using aluminum sulfate to control environmental allergens. Methods Fifty skin test reactive patients were simultaneously skin tested with conventional test materials and the actions of the protein/glycoprotein modifier, aluminum sulfate. Common allergens, dog, cat, dust mite, Alternaria, and cockroach were used in the study. Results Skin test reactivity was significantly reduced by the modifier aluminum sulfate. Our studies demonstrate that the effects of histamine were not affected by the presence of aluminum sulfate. In fact, skin test reactivity was reduced independent of whether aluminum sulfate was present in the allergen test material or removed prior to testing, indicating that the allergens had in some way been inactivated. Conclusion Aluminum sulfate was found to reduce the in vivo allergic reaction cascade induced by skin testing with common allergens. The exact mechanism is not clear but appears to involve the alteration of IgE-binding epitopes on the allergen. Our results indicate that it may be possible to diminish the allergenicity of an environment by application of the active agent aluminum sulfate, thus producing environmental control without complete removal of the allergen.

  14. Global progress and potentially effective policy responses to reduce maternal mortality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mbizvo, Michael T; Say, Lale

    2012-10-01

    Reducing maternal mortality within significant margins is a global imperative that reflects attainment of development goals. Progress in reducing maternal mortality, in particular among countries with notably high maternal mortality ratios (MMRs), has been substantially slower than the Millennium Development Goal target of an annual rate of 5.5% decline. The latest UN maternal mortality estimates show a reduction in MMR in a number of countries between 1990 and 2008. Understanding the factors associated with progress in countries that have reduced maternal mortality provides other countries and development partners with opportunities to consider and implement policies and interventions that could help accelerate progress. This paper reviews 6 countries that have demonstrated marked progress. The policies that have been effective include innovative financing measures; investment in human resources both in terms of strengthening pre-service education and emphasizing in-service training for healthcare providers; strengthening obstetric care by enhancing infrastructure and upgrading equipment, as well as improving quality of services; and investing in the broader determinants of maternal mortality, particularly family planning and women's education and socioeconomic empowerment. This range of actions, which includes a combination of facility and community-based approaches, provides a list of potentially effective strategies that could be considered when developing programs in other countries with slower progress. Strong political will and multistakeholder involvement and interventions are key in the development and implementation of these policies and actions.

  15. Loss of vascular early response gene reduces edema formation after experimental stroke

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Liu Fudong

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Vascular Early Response Gene (Verge is an immediate early gene (IEG that is up-regulated in endothelial cells in response to a number of stressors, including ischemic stroke. Endothelial cell lines that stably express Verge show enhanced permeability. Increased Verge expression has also been associated with blood brain barrier breakdown. In this study we investigated the role of Verge in ischemic injury induced by middle cerebral artery occlusion (MCAO in both Verge knockout (KO and wild type (WT mice. Verge KO mice had significantly less cerebral edema formation after MCAO compared to WT mice. However, stroke outcome (infarct size and neurological deficit scores evaluated at either 24 or 72 hours after stroke showed no differences between the two genotypes. Verge deletion leads to decreased edema formation after ischemia; however acute stroke outcomes were unchanged.

  16. Two large preoperative doses of erythropoietin do not reduce the systemic inflammatory response to cardiac surgery

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Poulsen, Troels Dirch; Andersen, Lars Willy; Steinbrüchel, Daniel

    2009-01-01

    OBJECTIVES: Cardiac surgery and cardiopulmonary bypass (CPB) induce an inflammatory reaction that may lead to tissue injury. Experimental studies suggest that recombinant human erythropoietin (EPO) independent of its erythropoietic effect may be used clinically as an anti-inflammatory drug...... of inflammatory cytokines. In contrast, EPO may augment the TNF-alpha and NT-proBNP response. Although the long-term clinical impact remains unknown, the findings do not support use of EPO as an anti-inflammatory drug in patients undergoing cardiac surgery........ This study tested the hypothesis that 2 large doses of EPO administered shortly before CPB ameliorate the systemic inflammatory response to CPB. DESIGN AND SETTING: A prospective, double-blind, placebo-controlled and randomized study at a single tertiary care hospital. PARTICIPANTS: Patients scheduled...

  17. Do cleaning organisms reduce the stress response of client reef fish?

    OpenAIRE

    Oliveira Tânia SF; Oliveira Rui F; Bshary Redouan; Canário Adelino VM

    2007-01-01

    Abstract Background Marine cleaning interactions in which cleaner fish or shrimps remove parasites from visiting 'client' reef fish are a textbook example of mutualism. However, there is yet no conclusive evidence that cleaning organisms significantly improve the health of their clients. We tested the stress response of wild caught individuals of two client species, Chromis dimidiata and Pseudanthias squamipinnis, that had either access to a cleaner wrasse Labroides dimidiatus, or to cleaner ...

  18. Distinctive Oxidative Stress Responses to Hydrogen Peroxide in Sulfate Reducing Bacteria Desulfovibrio vulgaris Hildenborough

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Zhou, Aifen; He, Zhili; Redding, A.M.; Mukhopadhyay, Aindrila; Hemme, Christopher L.; Joachimiak, Marcin P.; Bender, Kelly S.; Keasling, Jay D.; Stahl, David A.; Fields, Matthew W.; Hazen, Terry C.; Arkin, Adam P.; Wall, Judy D.; Zhou, Jizhong

    2009-01-01

    Response of Desulfovibrio vulgaris Hildenborough to hydrogen peroxide (H2O2, 1 mM) was investigated with transcriptomic, proteomic and genetic approaches. Microarray data demonstrated that gene expression was extensively affected by H2O2 with the response peaking at 120 min after H2O2 treatment. Genes affected include those involved with energy production, sulfate reduction, ribosomal structure and translation, H2O2 scavenging, posttranslational modification and DNA repair as evidenced by gene coexpression networks generated via a random matrix-theory based approach. Data from this study support the hypothesis that both PerR and Fur play important roles in H2O2-induced oxidative stress response. First, both PerR and Fur regulon genes were significantly up-regulated. Second, predicted PerR regulon genes ahpC and rbr2 were derepressedin Delta PerR and Delta Fur mutants and induction of neither gene was observed in both Delta PerR and Delta Fur when challenged with peroxide, suggesting possible overlap of these regulons. Third, both Delta PerR and Delta Fur appeared to be more tolerant of H2O2 as measured by optical density. Forth, proteomics data suggested de-repression of Fur during the oxidative stress response. In terms of the intracellular enzymatic H2O2 scavenging, gene expression data suggested that Rdl and Rbr2 may play major roles in the detoxification of H2O2. In addition, induction of thioredoxin reductase and thioredoxin appeared to be independent of PerR and Fur. Considering all data together, D. vulgaris employed a distinctive stress resistance mechanism to defend against increased cellular H2O2, and the temporal gene expression changes were consistent with the slowdown of cell growth at the onset of oxidative stress.

  19. Reduced emotional and corticosterone responses to stress in μ-opioid receptor knockout mice

    OpenAIRE

    Ide, Soichiro; Sora,Ichiro; Ikeda, Kazutaka; Minami, Masabumi; Uhl, George R.; Ishihara, Kumatoshi

    2009-01-01

    The detailed mechanisms of emotional modulation in the nervous system by opioids remain to be elucidated, although the opioid system is well known to play important roles in the mechanisms of analgesia and drug dependence. In the present study, we conducted behavioral tests of anxiety and depression and measured corticosterone concentrations in both male and female μ-opioid receptor knockout (MOP-KO) mice to reveal the involvement of μ-opioid receptors in stress-induced emotional responses. M...

  20. Physiological concentrations of zinc reduce taurine-activated GlyR responses to drugs of abuse

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kirson, Dean; Cornelison, Garrett L.; Philpo, Ashley E.; Todorovic, Jelena; Mihic, S. John

    2013-01-01

    Taurine is an endogenous ligand acting on glycine receptors in many brain regions, including the hippocampus, prefrontal cortex, and nucleus accumbens (nAcc). These areas also contain low concentrations of zinc, which is known to potentiate glycine receptor responses. Despite an increasing awareness of the role of the glycine receptor in the rewarding properties of drugs of abuse, the possible interactions of these compounds with zinc has not been thoroughly addressed. Two-electrode voltage-clamp electrophysiological experiments were performed on α1, α2 α1β and a2β glycine receptors expressed in Xenopus laevis oocytes. The effects of zinc alone, and zinc in combination with other positive modulators on the glycine receptor, were investigated when activated by the full agonist glycine versus the partial agonist taurine. Low concentrations of zinc enhanced responses of maximally-effective concentrations of taurine but not glycine. Likewise, chelation of zinc from buffers decreased responses of taurine- but not glycine-mediated currents. Potentiating concentrations of zinc decreased ethanol, isoflurane, and toluene enhancement of maximal taurine currents with no effects on maximal glycine currents. Our findings suggest that the concurrence of high concentrations of taurine and low concentrations of zinc attenuate the effects of additional modulators on the glycine receptor, and that these conditions are more representative of in vivo functioning than effects seen when these modulators are applied in isolation. PMID:23973295

  1. Physiological concentrations of zinc reduce taurine-activated GlyR responses to drugs of abuse.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kirson, Dean; Cornelison, Garrett L; Philpo, Ashley E; Todorovic, Jelena; Mihic, S John

    2013-12-01

    Taurine is an endogenous ligand acting on glycine receptors in many brain regions, including the hippocampus, prefrontal cortex, and nucleus accumbens (nAcc). These areas also contain low concentrations of zinc, which is known to potentiate glycine receptor responses. Despite an increasing awareness of the role of the glycine receptor in the rewarding properties of drugs of abuse, the possible interactions of these compounds with zinc has not been thoroughly addressed. Two-electrode voltage-clamp electrophysiological experiments were performed on α1, α2 α1β and α2β glycine receptors expressed in Xenopus laevis oocytes. The effects of zinc alone, and zinc in combination with other positive modulators on the glycine receptor, were investigated when activated by the full agonist glycine versus the partial agonist taurine. Low concentrations of zinc enhanced responses of maximally-effective concentrations of taurine but not glycine. Likewise, chelation of zinc from buffers decreased responses of taurine- but not glycine-mediated currents. Potentiating concentrations of zinc decreased ethanol, isoflurane, and toluene enhancement of maximal taurine currents with no effects on maximal glycine currents. Our findings suggest that the concurrence of high concentrations of taurine and low concentrations of zinc attenuate the effects of additional modulators on the glycine receptor, and that these conditions are more representative of in vivo functioning than effects seen when these modulators are applied in isolation. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. APOE Polymorphisms Contribute to Reduced Atorvastatin Response in Chilean Amerindian Subjects

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jenny Lagos

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available Genetic factors can determine the high variability observed in response to lipid-lowering therapy with statins. Nonetheless, the frequency of single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs and their impact can vary due to ethnicity. Because the Chilean population carries a strong Amerindian background, the objective of this study was to evaluate the influence of apolipoprotein E (APOE variants (rs429358, rs7412 and the 1959C>T SNP (rs5925 in the low-density lipoprotein receptor (LDLR in response to atorvastatin treatment in hypercholesterolemic individuals. A hundred and thirty nine subjects undergoing statin therapy were included. Identification of Amerindian mtDNA haplogroups was determined by polymerase chain reaction (PCR and PCR followed by restriction fragment length polymorphism (RFLP, respectively. SNPs were determined by PCR-RFLP. Out of the 139 individuals studied, 84.4% had an Amerindian background, according to mtDNA analysis. In relation to APOE variants, carriers of the E3/4 genotype presented lower cholesterol reduction compared to genotype E3/3 (LDL-C: −18% vs. −29%, p ˂ 0.001. On the other hand, the LDLR rs5925 SNP was not related to atorvastatin response (p = 0.5760. Our results suggest that APOE SNPs are potential predictors to atorvastatin therapy in Amerindian Chilean subjects.

  3. Species-area relationships are modulated by trophic rank, habitat affinity, and dispersal ability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Noordwijk, C G E; Verberk, Wilco C E P; Turin, Hans; Heijerman, Theodoor; Alders, Kees; Dekoninck, Wouter; Hannig, Karsten; Regan, Eugenie; McCormack, Stephen; Brown, Mark J F; Remke, Eva; Siepel, Henk; Berg, Matty P; Bonte, Dries

    2015-02-01

    viewed in concert. In addition, species' responses depend on the landscape context. Our study suggests that the impact of habitat area on trophic interactions may be larger than previously anticipated. In small habitat fragments surrounded by a hostile matrix, food chains may be strongly disrupted. This highlights the need to conserve continuous calcareous grassland patches of at least several hectares in size.

  4. Orally Administered Enoxaparin Ameliorates Acute Colitis by Reducing Macrophage-Associated Inflammatory Responses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lean, Qi Ying; Eri, Rajaraman D.; Randall-Demllo, Sarron; Sohal, Sukhwinder Singh; Stewart, Niall; Peterson, Gregory M.; Gueven, Nuri; Patel, Rahul P.

    2015-01-01

    Inflammatory bowel diseases, such as ulcerative colitis, cause significant morbidity and decreased quality of life. The currently available treatments are not effective in all patients, can be expensive and have potential to cause severe side effects. This prompts the need for new treatment modalities. Enoxaparin, a widely used antithrombotic agent, is reported to possess anti-inflammatory properties and therefore we evaluated its therapeutic potential in a mouse model of colitis. Acute colitis was induced in male C57BL/6 mice by administration of dextran sulfate sodium (DSS). Mice were treated once daily with enoxaparin via oral or intraperitoneal administration and monitored for colitis activities. On termination (day 8), colons were collected for macroscopic evaluation and cytokine measurement, and processed for histology and immunohistochemistry. Oral but not intraperitoneal administration of enoxaparin significantly ameliorated DSS-induced colitis. Oral enoxaparin-treated mice retained their body weight and displayed less diarrhea and fecal blood loss compared to the untreated colitis group. Colon weight in enoxaparin-treated mice was significantly lower, indicating reduced inflammation and edema. Histological examination of untreated colitis mice showed a massive loss of crypt architecture and goblet cells, infiltration of immune cells and the presence of edema, while all aspects of this pathology were alleviated by oral enoxaparin. Reduced number of macrophages in the colon of oral enoxaparin-treated mice was accompanied by decreased levels of pro-inflammatory cytokines. Oral enoxaparin significantly reduces the inflammatory pathology associated with DSS-induced colitis in mice and could therefore represent a novel therapeutic option for the management of ulcerative colitis. PMID:26218284

  5. 17-AAG Kills Intracellular Leishmania amazonensis while Reducing Inflammatory Responses in Infected Macrophages

    Science.gov (United States)

    Petersen, Antonio Luis de Oliveira Almeida; Guedes, Carlos Eduardo Sampaio; Versoza, Carolina Leite; Lima, José Geraldo Bomfim; de Freitas, Luiz Antônio Rodrigues; Borges, Valéria Matos; Veras, Patrícia Sampaio Tavares

    2012-01-01

    Background Leishmaniasis is a neglected endemic disease with a broad spectrum of clinical manifestations. Pentavalent antimonials have been the treatment of choice for the past 70 years and, due to the emergence of resistant cases, the efficacy of these drugs has come under scrutiny. Second-line drugs are less efficacious, cause a range of side effects and can be costly. The formulation of new generations of drugs, especially in developing countries, has become mandatory. Methodology/Principal Findings We investigated the anti-leishmanial effect of 17-(allylamino)-17-demethoxygeldanamycin (17-AAG), an HSP90 inhibitor, in vitro. This inhibitor is currently in clinical trials for cancer treatment; however, its effects against intracellular Leishmania remain untested. Macrophages infected with L. amazonensis were treated with 17-AAG (25–500 nM) and parasite load was quantified using optical microscopy. Parasite load declined in 17-AAG-treated macrophages in a dose- and time-dependent manner. Intracellular parasite death became irreversible after 4 h of treatment with 17-AAG, and occurred independent of nitric oxide (NO) and superoxide (O2−) production. Additionally, intracellular parasite viability was severely reduced after 48 h of treatment. Interestingly, treatment with 17-AAG reduced pro-inflammatory mediator production, including TNF-α, IL-6 and MCP-1, yet IL-12 remained unaffected. Electron microscopy revealed morphological alterations, such as double-membrane vacuoles and myelin figures at 24 and 48 h after 17-AAG treatment. Conclusions/Significance The HSP90 inhibitor, 17-AAG, possesses high potency under low dosage and reduces both pro-inflammatory and oxidative molecule production. Therefore, further studies are warranted to investigate this inhibitor’s potential in the development of new generations of anti-leishmanials. PMID:23152914

  6. The Role of Responsibility Factors of Reducing Inefficiencies in IS Projects on Six Sigma Certification in Service Organizations

    OpenAIRE

    2012-01-01

    Service organizations worldwide are turning to Six Sigma Program (SSP) to remove variability in their processes to attain a competitive marketplace advantage. SSP offers methodology, concepts, and statistical tools to understand and standardize processes by reducing sources of variability. An effective “Belt†certification program, considered a major contributor to successful implementation of SSP as it provides the SSP professionals a clear understanding of what their responsibilities sho...

  7. The response of sward-dwelling arthropod communities to reduced grassland management intensity in pastures

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Helden Alvin J.

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available We compared arthropod taxon richness, diversity and community structure of two replicated grassland husbandry experiments to investigate effects of reduced management intensity, as measured by nutrient input levels (390, 224 and 0 kg/ha per year N in one experiment, and 225 and 88 kg/ha per year N in another. Suction sampling was used to collect Araneae, Coleoptera, Hemiptera and Hymenoptera, with Araneae and Coleoptera also sampled with pitfall trapping. Univariate analyses found no significant differences in abundance and species density between treatments. However, with multivariate analysis, there were significant differences in arthropod community structure between treatments in both experiments.

  8. Natural hazards research and response; international decade for reducing loss from natural disasters

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hays, W.W.

    1992-01-01

    Worldwide losses from natural disasters are increasing rapidly due to population growth, urban sprawl, and increasing concentration of new construction in high-risk areas. to deal with these problems, the United Nations has designated the 1990's as the International Decade for Natural Disaster Reduction (IDNDR). The United States and more than 150 other nations signed the IDNDR resolution at the 44th General Assembly of the United Nations. The resolution calls on all nations to develop programs to reduce loss of life, economic impact, and human suffering caused by natural disasters. 

  9. Racial bias in neural response to others' pain is reduced with other-race contact.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cao, Yuan; Contreras-Huerta, Luis Sebastian; McFadyen, Jessica; Cunnington, Ross

    2015-09-01

    Observing the pain of others has been shown to elicit greater activation in sensory and emotional areas of the brain suggested to represent a neural marker of empathy. This modulation of brain responses to others' pain is dependent on the race of the observed person, such that observing own-race people in pain is associated with greater activity in the anterior cingulate and bilateral insula cortices compared to other-race people. Importantly, it is not known how this racial bias to pain in other-race individuals might change over time in new immigrants or might depend on the level and quality of contact with people of the other-race. We investigated these issues by recruiting Chinese students who had first arrived in Australia within the past 6 months to 5 years and assessing their level of contact with other races across different social contexts using comprehensive rating scales. During fMRI, participants observed videos of own-race/other-race individuals, as well as own-group/other-group individuals, receiving painful or non-painful touch. The typical racial bias in neural responses to observed pain was evident, whereby activation in the anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) was greater for pain in own-race compared to other-race people. Crucially, activation in the anterior cingulate to pain in other races increased significantly with the level of contact participants reported with people of the other race. Importantly, this correlation did not depend on the closeness of contact or personal relationships, but simply on the overall level of experience with people of the other race in their every-day environment. Racial bias in neural responses to others' pain, as a neural marker of empathy, therefore changes with experience in new immigrants at least within 5 years of arrival in the new society and, crucially, depends on the level of contact with people of the other race in every-day life contexts.

  10. Ethylene: Response of Fruit Dehiscence to CO2 and Reduced Pressure 1

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lipe, John A.; Morgan, Page W.

    1972-01-01

    These studies were conducted to determine whether ethylene serves as a natural regulator of fruit wall dehiscence, a major visible feature of ripening in some fruits. We employed treatments to inhibit ethylene action or remove ethylene and observed their effect on fruit dehiscence. CO2 (13%), a competitive inhibitor of ethylene action in many systems, readily delayed dehiscence of detached fruits of cotton (Gossypium hirsutum L.), pecan (Carya illinoensis [Wang.] K. Koch), and okra (Hibiscus esculentus L.). The CO2 effect was duplicated by placing fruits under reduced pressure (200 millimeters mercury), to promote the escape of ethylene from the tissue. Dehiscence of detached fruits of these species as well as attached cotton fruits was delayed. The delay of dehiscence of cotton and okra by both treatments was achieved with fruit harvested at intervals from shortly after anthesis until shortly before natural dehiscence. Pecan fruits would not dehisce until approximately 1 month before natural dehiscence, and during that time, CO2 and reduced pressure delayed dehiscence. CO2 and ethylene were competitive in their effects on cotton fruit dehiscence. All of the results are compatible with a hypothetical role of ethylene as a natural regulator of dehiscence, a dominant aspect of ripening of cotton, pecan, and some other fruits. PMID:16658260

  11. Ethylene: Response of Fruit Dehiscence to CO(2) and Reduced Pressure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lipe, J A; Morgan, P W

    1972-12-01

    These studies were conducted to determine whether ethylene serves as a natural regulator of fruit wall dehiscence, a major visible feature of ripening in some fruits. We employed treatments to inhibit ethylene action or remove ethylene and observed their effect on fruit dehiscence. CO(2) (13%), a competitive inhibitor of ethylene action in many systems, readily delayed dehiscence of detached fruits of cotton (Gossypium hirsutum L.), pecan (Carya illinoensis [Wang.] K. Koch), and okra (Hibiscus esculentus L.). The CO(2) effect was duplicated by placing fruits under reduced pressure (200 millimeters mercury), to promote the escape of ethylene from the tissue. Dehiscence of detached fruits of these species as well as attached cotton fruits was delayed. The delay of dehiscence of cotton and okra by both treatments was achieved with fruit harvested at intervals from shortly after anthesis until shortly before natural dehiscence. Pecan fruits would not dehisce until approximately 1 month before natural dehiscence, and during that time, CO(2) and reduced pressure delayed dehiscence. CO(2) and ethylene were competitive in their effects on cotton fruit dehiscence. All of the results are compatible with a hypothetical role of ethylene as a natural regulator of dehiscence, a dominant aspect of ripening of cotton, pecan, and some other fruits.

  12. Borneol, a Bicyclic Monoterpene Alcohol, Reduces Nociceptive Behavior and Inflammatory Response in Mice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jackson Roberto Guedes da Silva Almeida

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Borneol, a bicyclic monoterpene, has been evaluated for antinociceptive and anti-inflammatory activities. Antinociceptive and anti-inflammatory activities were studied by measuring nociception by acetic acid, formalin, hot plate, and grip strength tests, while inflammation was prompted by carrageenan-induced peritonitis. The rotarod test was used to evaluate motor coordination. Borneol produced a significant (P<0.01 reduction of the nociceptive behavior at the early and late phases of paw licking and reduced the writhing reflex in mice (formalin and writhing tests, resp.. When the hot plate test was conducted, borneol (in higher dose produced an inhibition (P<0.05 of the nociceptive behavior. Such results were unlikely to be provoked by motor abnormality. Additionally, borneol-treated mice reduced the carrageenan-induced leukocytes migration to the peritoneal cavity. Together, our results suggest that borneol possess significant central and peripheral antinociceptive activity; it has also anti-inflammatory activity. In addition, borneol did not impair motor coordination.

  13. A competitive inhibitor that reduces recruitment of androgen receptor to androgen-responsive genes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cherian, Milu T; Wilson, Elizabeth M; Shapiro, David J

    2012-07-01

    The androgen receptor (AR) has a critical role in the growth and progression of androgen-dependent and castration-resistant prostate cancers. To identify novel inhibitors of AR transactivation that block growth of prostate cancer cells, a luciferase-based high-throughput screen of ~160,000 small molecules was performed in cells stably expressing AR and a prostate-specific antigen (PSA)-luciferase reporter. CPIC (1-(3-(2-chlorophenoxy) propyl)-1H-indole-3-carbonitrile) was identified as a small molecule that blocks AR transactivation to a greater extent than other steroid receptors. CPIC inhibited AR-mediated proliferation of androgen-sensitive prostate cancer cell lines, with minimal toxicity in AR-negative cell lines. CPIC treatment also reduced the anchorage-independent growth of LAPC-4 prostate cancer cells. CPIC functioned as a pure antagonist by inhibiting the expression of AR-regulated genes in LAPC-4 cells that express wild-type AR and exhibited weak agonist activity in LNCaP cells that express the mutant AR-T877A. CPIC treatment did not reduce AR levels or alter its nuclear localization. We used chromatin immunoprecipitation to identify the site of action of CPIC. CPIC inhibited recruitment of androgen-bound AR to the PSA promoter and enhancer sites to a greater extent than bicalutamide. CPIC is a new therapeutic inhibitor that targets AR-mediated gene activation with potential to arrest the growth of prostate cancer.

  14. Lactobacilli require physical contact to reduce staphylococcal TSST-1 secretion and vaginal epithelial inflammatory response.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Younes, Jessica A; Reid, Gregor; van der Mei, Henny C; Busscher, Henk J

    2016-06-01

    ITALIC! Staphylococcus aureusbiofilms can be found on vaginal epithelia, secreting toxins and causing inflammation. The co-vaginal species ITALIC! Lactobacilluscan alter staphylococcal-induced epithelial secretion of inflammatory cytokines and quench staphylococcal toxic shock syndrome toxin-1 secretion. It is hypothesized that these effects of lactobacilli require direct physical contact between lactobacilli, staphylococci and the epithelium. Indeed, lactobacilli only reduced ITALIC! S. aureus-induced inflammatory cytokine expression when allowed physical contact with vaginal epithelial cells. Furthermore, a reduction in toxic shock syndrome toxin-1 secretion only occurred when a probiotic ITALIC! Lactobacillusstrain was allowed contact, but not when being physically separated from ITALIC! S. aureus Bacterial-probe atomic force microscopy demonstrated that lactobacilli and staphylococci strongly adhere to epithelial cells, while lactobacilli adhere stronger to staphylococci than staphylococci to each other, giving lactobacilli opportunity to penetrate and reside in staphylococcal biofilms, as visualized using confocal laser scanning microscopy with fluorescence ITALIC! in situhybridization probes. These results identify that physical contact and biochemical signaling by lactobacilli are intrinsically linked mechanisms that reduce virulence of ITALIC! S. aureusbiofilm.

  15. Mathematics anxiety reduces default mode network deactivation in response to numerical tasks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Belinda ePletzer

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available Mathematics anxiety is negatively related to mathematics performance, thereby threatening the professional success. Preoccupation with the emotional content of the stimuli may consume working memory resources, which may be reflected in decreased deactivation of areas associated with the default mode network (DMN activated during self-referential and emotional processing. The common problem is that math anxiety is usually associated with poor math performance, so that any group differences are difficult to interpret.Here we compared the BOLD-response of 18 participants with high (HMAs and 18 participants with low mathematics anxiety (LMAs matched for their mathematical performance to two numerical tasks (number comparison, number bisection. During both tasks, we found stronger deactivation within the DMN in LMAs compared to HMAs, while BOLD-response in task-related activation areas did not differ between HMAs and LMAs. The difference in DMN deactivation between the HMA and LMA group was more pronounced in stimuli with additional requirement on inhibitory functions, but did not differ between number magnitude processing and arithmetic fact retrieval.

  16. Mathematics anxiety reduces default mode network deactivation in response to numerical tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pletzer, Belinda; Kronbichler, Martin; Nuerk, Hans-Christoph; Kerschbaum, Hubert H

    2015-01-01

    Mathematics anxiety is negatively related to mathematics performance, thereby threatening the professional success. Preoccupation with the emotional content of the stimuli may consume working memory resources, which may be reflected in decreased deactivation of areas associated with the default mode network (DMN) activated during self-referential and emotional processing. The common problem is that math anxiety is usually associated with poor math performance, so that any group differences are difficult to interpret. Here we compared the BOLD-response of 18 participants with high (HMAs) and 18 participants with low mathematics anxiety (LMAs) matched for their mathematical performance to two numerical tasks (number comparison, number bisection). During both tasks, we found stronger deactivation within the DMN in LMAs compared to HMAs, while BOLD-response in task-related activation areas did not differ between HMAs and LMAs. The difference in DMN deactivation between the HMA and LMA group was more pronounced in stimuli with additional requirement on inhibitory functions, but did not differ between number magnitude processing and arithmetic fact retrieval.

  17. Reducing Defensive Responses to Thoughts of Death: Meditation, Mindfulness, and Buddhism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Park, Young Chin; Pyszczynski, Tom

    2017-08-24

    Three studies investigated the effects of meditation on responses to reminders of death. Study 1 took a quasi-experimental approach, comparing defensive responses to mortality salience (MS) of South Korean participants with varying levels of experience with Buddhism and meditation. Whereas non-Buddhists without meditation showed the typical increase in worldview defense after mortality salience (MS), this effect was not found among non-Buddhists immediately after an initial meditation experience, nor among lay Buddhists who meditated regularly or Buddhist monks with intensive meditation experience. Study 2, a fully randomized experiment, showed that MS increased worldview defense among South Koreans at a meditation training who were assessed before meditating but not among participants assessed after their first meditation experience. Study 3 showed that whereas American students without prior meditation experience showed increased worldview defense and suppression of death-related thoughts after MS, these effects were eliminated immediately after an initial meditation experience. Death thought accessibility mediated the effect of MS on worldview defense without meditation, but meditation eliminated this mediation. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2017 APA, all rights reserved).

  18. Reduced interleukin-2 responsiveness impairs the ability of Treg cells to compete for IL-2 in nonobese diabetic mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    James, Cini R; Buckle, Irina; Muscate, Franziska; Otsuka, Masayuki; Nakao, Mari; Oon, Jack Sh; Steptoe, Raymond J; Thomas, Ranjeny; Hamilton-Williams, Emma E

    2016-05-01

    Enhancement of regulatory T cell (Treg cell) frequency and function is the goal of many therapeutic strategies aimed at treating type 1 diabetes (T1D). The interleukin-2 (IL-2) pathway, which has been strongly implicated in T1D susceptibility in both humans and mice, is a master regulator of Treg cell homeostasis and function. We investigated how IL-2 pathway defects impact Treg cells in T1D-susceptible nonobese diabetic (NOD) mice in comparison with protected C57BL/6 and NOD congenic mice. NOD Treg cells were reduced in frequency specifically in the lymph nodes and expressed lower levels of CD25 and CD39/CD73 immunosuppressive molecules. In the spleen and blood, Treg cell frequency was preserved through expansion of CD25(low), effector phenotype Treg cells. Reduced CD25 expression led to decreased IL-2 signaling in NOD Treg cells. In vivo, treatment with IL-2-anti-IL-2 antibody complexes led to effective upregulation of suppressive molecules on NOD Treg cells in the spleen and blood, but had reduced efficacy on lymph node Treg cells. In contrast, NOD CD8(+) and CD4(+) effector T cells were not impaired in their response to IL-2 therapy. We conclude that NOD Treg cells have an impaired responsiveness to IL-2 that reduces their ability to compete for a limited supply of IL-2.

  19. The Responses of Hyperglycemic Dividing Mesangial Cells to Heparin Are Mediated by the Non-reducing Terminal Trisaccharide.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Christina P; Hascall, Vincent C; Zhang, Fuming; Linhardt, Robert J; Abbadi, Amina; Wang, Aimin

    2015-11-27

    Our previous studies showed: (i) that growth-arrested G0/G1 rat mesangial cells stimulated to divide in hyperglycemic medium initiate intracellular hyaluronan synthesis that induces autophagy and the cyclin D3-induced formation of a monocyte-adhesive extracellular hyaluronan matrix after completing cell division; and (ii) that heparin inhibits the intracellular hyaluronan and autophagy responses, but after completing division, induces hyaluronan synthesis at the plasma membrane with the formation of a larger monocyte-adhesive hyaluronan matrix. This study shows: (i) that the non-terminal trisaccharide of heparin is sufficient to initiate the same responses as intact heparin, (ii) that a fully sulfated tetrasaccharide isolated from bacterial heparin lyase 1 digests of heparin that contains a Δ-2S-iduronate on the non-reducing end does not initiate the same responses as intact heparin, and (iii) that removal of the Δ-2S-iduronate to expose the fully sulfated trisaccharide (GlcNS(6S)-IdoUA(2S)-GlcNS(6S)) does initiate the same responses as intact heparin. These results provide evidence that mammalian heparanase digestion of heparin and heparan sulfate exposes a cryptic motif on the non-reducing termini that is recognized by a receptor on dividing cells.

  20. Policy options to reduce consumer waste to zero: comparing product stewardship and extended producer responsibility for refrigerator waste.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nicol, Scott; Thompson, Shirley

    2007-06-01

    Today, over-consumption, pollution and resource depletion threaten sustainability. Waste management policies frequently fail to reduce consumption, prevent pollution, conserve resources and foster sustainable products. However, waste policies are changing to focus on lifecycle impacts of products from the cradle to the grave by extending the responsibilities of stakeholders to post-consumer management. Product stewardship and extended producer responsibility are two policies in use, with radically different results when compared for one consumer product, refrigerators. North America has enacted product stewardship policies that fail to require producers to take physical or financial responsibility for recycling or for environmentally sound disposal, so that releases of ozone depleting substances routinely occur, which contribute to the expanding the ozone hole. Conversely, Europe's Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE) Directive requires extended producer responsibility, whereby producers collect and manage their own post-consumer waste products. WEEE has resulted in high recycling rates of greater than 85%, reduced emissions of ozone-depleting substances and other toxins, greener production methods, such as replacing greenhouse gas refrigerants with environmentally friendly hydrocarbons and more reuse of refrigerators in the EU in comparison with North America.

  1. Patterns of trophic niche divergence between invasive and native fishes in wild communities are predictable from mesocosm studies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tran, Thi Nhat Quyen; Jackson, Michelle C; Sheath, Danny; Verreycken, Hugo; Britton, J Robert

    2015-07-01

    Ecological theory attempts to predict how impacts for native species arise from biological invasions. A fundamental question centres on the feeding interactions of invasive and native species: whether invasion will result in increased interspecific competition, which would result in negative consequences for the competing species, or trophic niche divergence, which would facilitate the invader's integration into the community and their coexistence with native species. Here, the feeding interactions of a highly invasive fish, topmouth gudgeon Pseudorasbora parva, with three native and functionally similar fishes were studied to determine whether patterns of either niche overlap or divergence detected in mesocosm experiments were apparent between the species at larger spatial scales. Using stable isotope analysis, their feeding relationships were assessed initially in the mesocosms (1000 L) and then in small ponds (600 m(2) ). In the mesocosms, a consistent pattern of trophic niche divergence was evident between the sympatric fishes, with niches shifting further apart in isotopic space than suggested in allopatry, revealing that sharing of food resources was limited. Sympatric P. parva also had a smaller niche than their allopatric populations. In eight small ponds where P. parva had coexisted for several years with at least one of the fish species used in the mesocosms, strong patterns of niche differentiation were also apparent, with P. parva always at a lower trophic position than the other fishes, as also occurred in the mesocosms. Where these fishes were sympatric within more complex fish communities in the large ponds, similar patterns were also apparent, with strong evidence of trophic niche differentiation. Aspects of the ecological impacts of P. parva invasion for native communities in larger ponds were consistent with those in the mesocosm experiments. Their invasion resulted in divergence in trophic niches, partly due to their reduced niche widths

  2. Neuroprotection via matrix-trophic coupling between cerebral endothelial cells and neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guo, Shuzhen; Kim, Woo Jean; Lok, Josephine; Lee, Sun-Ryung; Besancon, Elaine; Luo, Bing-Hao; Stins, Monique F; Wang, Xiaoying; Dedhar, Shoukat; Lo, Eng H

    2008-05-27

    The neurovascular unit is an emerging concept that emphasizes homeostatic interactions between endothelium and cerebral parenchyma. Here, we show that cerebral endothelium are not just inert tubes for delivering blood, but they also secrete trophic factors that can be directly neuroprotective. Conditioned media from cerebral endothelial cells broadly protects neurons against oxygen-glucose deprivation, oxidative damage, endoplasmic reticulum stress, hypoxia, and amyloid neurotoxicity. This phenomenon is largely mediated by endothelial-produced brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) because filtering endothelial-conditioned media with TrkB-Fc eliminates the neuroprotective effect. Endothelial production of BDNF is sustained by beta-1 integrin and integrin-linked kinase (ILK) signaling. Noncytotoxic levels of oxidative stress disrupts ILK signaling and reduces endothelial levels of neuroprotective BDNF. These data suggest that cerebral endothelium provides a critical source of homeostatic support for neurons. Targeting these signals of matrix and trophic coupling between endothelium and neurons may provide new therapeutic opportunities for stroke and other CNS disorders.

  3. Influence of plant genetic diversity on interactions between higher trophic levels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moreira, Xoaquín; Mooney, Kailen A

    2013-06-23

    While the ecological consequences of plant diversity have received much attention, the mechanisms by which intraspecific diversity affects associated communities remains understudied. We report on a field experiment documenting the effects of patch diversity in the plant Baccharis salicifolia (genotypic monocultures versus polycultures of four genotypes), ants (presence versus absence) and their interaction on ant-tended aphids, ants and parasitic wasps, and the mechanistic pathways by which diversity influences their multi-trophic interactions. Five months after planting, polycultures (versus monocultures) had increased abundances of aphids (threefold), ants (3.2-fold) and parasitoids (1.7-fold) owing to non-additive effects of genetic diversity. The effect on aphids was direct, as plant genetic diversity did not mediate ant-aphid, parasitoid-aphid or ant-parasitoid interactions. This increase in aphid abundance occurred even though plant growth (and thus aphid resources) was not higher in polycultures. The increase in ants and parasitoids was an indirect effect, due entirely to higher aphid abundance. Ants reduced parasitoid abundance by 60 per cent, but did not affect aphid abundance or plant growth, and these top-down effects were equivalent between monocultures and polycultures. In summary, intraspecific plant diversity did not increase primary productivity, but nevertheless had strong effects across multiple trophic levels, and effects on both herbivore mutualists and enemies could be predicted entirely as an extension of plant-herbivore interactions.

  4. Trophic interference by Salmo trutta on Aplochiton zebra and Aplochiton taeniatus in southern Patagonian lakes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elgueta, A; González, J; Ruzzante, D E; Walde, S J; Habit, E

    2013-02-01

    The length and mass ratio, diet and isotopic composition of Aplochiton zebra and Aplochiton taeniatus inhabiting a Salmo trutta-invaded and a S. trutta-free lake in southern Patagonia were compared. Results indicate that S. trutta exercises important trophic interference over A. zebra and A. taeniatus, causing changes in their dietary composition by reducing the consumption of winged Diptera through changes in feeding behaviours that involve jumping out of the water. This effect is significantly higher in A. zebra than in A. taeniatus a species that has a highly specialized diet. The dietary changes of A. zebra and A. taeniatus in sympatry with S. trutta lead to an impoverishment of their isotopic nitrogen signals (δ(15)N), suggesting a reduction of their trophic position. In the case of A. zebra, this translates into a significant decrease in its body condition factor. Such interference could lead to a population decline of this species and would explain the current distribution range decline and allopatry with S. trutta in fluvial systems.

  5. Bifenthrin causes trophic cascades and alters insect emergence in mesocosms: implication for small streams

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rogers, Holly; Schmidt, Travis S.; Dabney, Brittanie L.; Hladik, Michelle L.; Mahler, Barbara J.; VanMetre, Peter

    2016-01-01

    Direct and indirect ecological effects of the widely used insecticide bifenthrin on stream ecosystems are largely unknown. To investigate such effects, a manipulative experiment was conducted in stream mesocosms that were colonized by aquatic insect communities and exposed to bifenthrin-contaminated sediment; implications for natural streams were interpreted through comparison of mesocosm results to a survey of 100 Midwestern streams, USA. In the mesocosm experiment, direct effects of bifenthrin exposure included reduced larval macroinvertebrate abundance, richness, and biomass at concentrations (EC50s ranged 197.6 – 233.5 ng bifenthrin/ g organic carbon) previously thought safe for aquatic life. Indirect effects included a trophic cascade in which periphyton abundance increased after macroinvertebrate scrapers decreased. Adult emergence dynamics and corresponding terrestrial subsidies were altered at all bifenthrin concentrations tested. Extrapolating these results to the Midwestern stream assessment suggests pervasive ecological effects, with altered emergence dynamics likely in 40% of streams and a trophic cascade in 7% of streams. This study provides new evidence that a common pyrethroid might alter aquatic and terrestrial ecosystem function at the regional scale.

  6. Disrupted trophic interactions affect recruitment of boreal deciduous and coniferous trees in northern Europe.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Angelstam, Per; Manton, Michael; Pedersen, Simen; Elbakidze, Marine

    2017-06-01

    Loss of large carnivore populations may lead to increased population densities of large herbivores, and subsequent cascading effects on the composition, structure, and function of ecosystems. Using a macroecological approach based on studies in multiple boreal forest landscapes in the Baltic Sea region and Russia, we tested the hypothesis that disrupted trophic interactions among large carnivores and large herbivores affect the recruitment of both ecologically and economically valuable tree species. We measured damage levels on young trees and large herbivore density in 10 local landscapes representing a gradient from extinct to extant populations of both large carnivores and large herbivores. We also tested the alternative hypothesis that forest management intensity is correlated to reduced recruitment of these tree species. At the macroecological scale there was an inverse relationship between the number of large carnivores and large herbivores. This coincided with a steep gradient in browsing damage on the ecologically important aspen, rowan and sallow as hosts for specialized species, as well as the economically important Scots pine. In one landscape hunting had replaced the presence of carnivores. Mean damage levels of these four tree species were correlated with large herbivore abundance, but not with forest management intensity. We discuss the pros and cons of this macroecological approach, as well as the challenge of governing and managing trophic interactions at multiple scales. © 2017 by the Ecological Society of America.

  7. CHIP Knockdown Reduced Heat Shock Response and Protein Quality Control Capacity in Lens Epithelial Cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, W; Liu, Z; Bao, X; Qin, Y; Taylor, A; Shang, F; Wu, M

    2015-01-01

    Protein quality control (PQC) systems, including molecular chaperones and ubiquitin-proteasome pathway (UPP), plays an important role in maintaining intracellular protein homeostasis. Carboxyl terminus of Hsc70- interacting protein (CHIP) links the chaperone and UPPs, thus contributing to the repair or removal of damaged proteins. Over-expression of CHIP had previously been used to protect cells from environmental stress. In order to gain a more physiologic mechanism of the advantage conferred by CHIP, we induced a CHIP knockdown and monitored the ability of cells to cope with environmental stress. To knockdown CHIP, the human lens epithelial cell line HLE B3 was transfected with lentiviral particles that encode a CHIP short hairpin RNA (shRNA) or negative control lentiviral particles. Stable CHIP-knock down cells (KD) and negative control cells (NC) were selected with puromycin. After exposure to heat shock stress, there was no change observed in the expression of Hsp90. In contrast, Hsp70 levels increased significantly in NC cells but less so in KD cells. Hsp27 levels also increased after heat shock, but only in NC cells. Protein ubiquitination was reduced when CHIP was knocked down. CHIP knockdown reduced the ability to clear aggregation proteins. When same levels of aggregation-prone RFP-mutant crystallin fusion protein, RFP/V76D-γD, was expressed, there was ~9- fold more aggregates in KD cells as compared to that observed in NC cells. Furthermore, KD cells were more sensitive to toxicity of amino acid analog canavanine as compared to NC cells. Together, these data indicate that CHIP is required for PQC and that CHIP knockdown diminished cellular PQC capacity in lens cells.

  8. Crop Model Improvement Reduces the Uncertainty of the Response to Temperature of Multi-Model Ensembles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maiorano, Andrea; Martre, Pierre; Asseng, Senthold; Ewert, Frank; Mueller, Christoph; Roetter, Reimund P.; Ruane, Alex C.; Semenov, Mikhail A.; Wallach, Daniel; Wang, Enli

    2016-01-01

    To improve climate change impact estimates and to quantify their uncertainty, multi-model ensembles (MMEs) have been suggested. Model improvements can improve the accuracy of simulations and reduce the uncertainty of climate change impact assessments. Furthermore, they can reduce the number of models needed in a MME. Herein, 15 wheat growth models of a larger MME were improved through re-parameterization and/or incorporating or modifying heat stress effects on phenology, leaf growth and senescence, biomass growth, and grain number and size using detailed field experimental data from the USDA Hot Serial Cereal experiment (calibration data set). Simulation results from before and after model improvement were then evaluated with independent field experiments from a CIMMYT worldwide field trial network (evaluation data set). Model improvements decreased the variation (10th to 90th model ensemble percentile range) of grain yields simulated by the MME on average by 39% in the calibration data set and by 26% in the independent evaluation data set for crops grown in mean seasonal temperatures greater than 24 C. MME mean squared error in simulating grain yield decreased by 37%. A reduction in MME uncertainty range by 27% increased MME prediction skills by 47%. Results suggest that the mean level of variation observed in field experiments and used as a benchmark can be reached with half the number of models in the MME. Improving crop models is therefore important to increase the certainty of model-based impact assessments and allow more practical, i.e. smaller MMEs to be used effectively.

  9. Halofuginone reduces the inflammatory responses of DSS-induced colitis through metabolic reprogramming.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Jing; Xiao, Hai-Tao; Wang, Hong-Sheng; Mu, Huai-Xue; Zhao, Ling; Du, Jun; Yang, Depo; Wang, Dongmei; Bian, Zhao-Xiang; Lin, Shu-Hai

    2016-06-21

    Hypoxia and inflammation have been identified as the hallmarks of colitis, intertwined with metabolism. Here, we report that halofuginone (HF), an antiparasitic drug, attenuates dextran sulfate sodium (DSS)-induced colitis in mice, as represented by attenuating the disease activity index, inhibiting colonic shortening, ameliorating colonic lesions and histological signs of damage, reducing colonic myeloperoxidase activity, and suppressing the production of pro-inflammatory cytokines in colon tissue. Intriguingly, the hypoxia-inducible factor 1alpha (HIF-1α) and tumor necrosis factor alpha were also suppressed by HF treatment in colon tissues, exhibiting a tissue-specific effect. To further reveal the metabolic signatures upon HF treatment, mass spectrometry-based metabolomic analysis of the small molecular metabolites in liver, spleen and colon tissues was performed. As a result, we found that HF treatment counteracted the levels of acylcarnitines, including palmitoyl-l-carnitine, isobutyrylcarnitine, vaccenylcarnitine, and myristoylcarnitine, in colon tissues with DSS induction, but no significant change in the levels of acylcarnitines was observed in liver or spleen tissues. The metabolic signatures may indicate that incomplete fatty acid oxidation (FAO) in the colon could be restored upon HF treatment as the tissue-specific metabolic characterization. Taken together, our findings uncovered that the HF potentiated anti-inflammatory effect in DSS-induced colitis in mice and its underlying mechanisms could be associated with the inhibition of HIF-1α and reduced levels of acylcarnitines, suggesting that both the inhibition of HIF-1α and the counteraction of incomplete FAO might be useful in the prevention and treatment of inflammatory bowel disease.

  10. Free tissue transfer for trophic ulcer complicating leprosy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bhatt Yogesh

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available Plantar ulceration is the commonest disability in leprosy and occurs in about 10 to 20% of leprosy patients. Various loco-regional flaps have been described for reconstruction of trophic ulcers; however, very large defects are not amenable to local flaps and free flaps form one of the important treatment options. We present a case of a post Hansen′s trophic ulcer over the forefoot managed using a radial artery forearm free flap. Debridement of the osteomyelitic bone, removal of the bony prominences, coverage by a well-vascularised tissue, end-to-side arterial anastomosis, use of anterior tibial as the recipient vessel and good postoperative compliance in foot care on the part of the patient gave us good results.

  11. A General Approach to the Modelling of Trophic Chains

    CERN Document Server

    Dilão, R; Dilao, Rui; Domingos, Tiago

    1999-01-01

    Based on the law of mass action (and its microscopic foundation) and mass conservation, we present here a method to derive consistent dynamic models for the time evolution of systems with an arbitrary number of species. Equations are derived through a mechanistic description, ensuring that all parameters have ecological meaning. After discussing the biological mechanisms associated to the logistic and Lotka-Volterra equations, we show how to derive general models for trophic chains, including the effects of internal states at fast time scales. We show that conformity with the mass action law leads to different functional forms for the Lotka-Volterra and trophic chain models. We use mass conservation to recover the concept of carrying capacity for an arbitrary food chain.

  12. Seasonal succession in zooplankton feeding traits reveals trophic trait coupling

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kenitz, Kasia; Visser, Andre; Mariani, Patrizio

    2017-01-01

    succession and shows how the physical environment controls the vertical structure of plankton communities, where ambush feeders exhibit a preference for greater depths during summer. We characterize the seasonal succession as trophic trait coupling and conjecture that this coupling leads to a trophic trait......The seasonal forcing of pelagic communities invokes a succession of the dominant phytoplankton and zooplankton species. Here, we characterize the seasonal succession of the plankton traits and their interactions using observations and model simulations of the plankton community in the western...... English Channel. We focus on activity traits that characterize the defensive and feeding abilities of zooplankton and distinguish between low risk, low return ambush feeders and high risk, high return feeding-current feeders. While the phytoplankton succession depends on traits related to nutrient...

  13. Trait-mediated trophic interactions: is foraging theory keeping up?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Railsback, Steven F; Harvey, Bret C

    2013-02-01

    Many ecologists believe that there is a lack of foraging theory that works in community contexts, for populations of unique individuals each making trade-offs between food and risk that are subject to feedbacks from behavior of others. Such theory is necessary to reproduce the trait-mediated trophic interactions now recognized as widespread and strong. Game theory can address feedbacks but does not provide foraging theory for unique individuals in variable environments. 'State- and prediction-based theory' (SPT) is a new approach that combines existing trade-off methods with routine updating: individuals regularly predict future food availability and risk from current conditions to optimize a fitness measure. SPT can reproduce a variety of realistic foraging behaviors and trait-mediated trophic interactions with feedbacks, even when the environment is unpredictable.

  14. Phenological sensitivity to climate across taxa and trophic levels

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Thackeray, Stephen J.; Henrys, Peter; Hemming, Deborah

    2016-01-01

    Sensitivity Profile approach to 10,003 terrestrial and aquatic phenological data sets, spatially matched to temperature and precipitation data, to quantify variation in climate sensitivity. The direction, magnitude and timing of climate sensitivity varied markedly among organisms within taxonomic and trophic...... groups. Despite this variability, we detected systematic variation in the direction and magnitude of phenological climate sensitivity. Secondary consumers showed consistently lower climate sensitivity than other groups. We used mid-century climate change projections to estimate that the timing...... of phenological events could change more for primary consumers than for species in other trophic levels (6.2 versus 2.5–2.9 days earlier on average), with substantial taxonomic variation (1.1–14.8 days earlier on average)....

  15. Global change in the trophic functioning of marine food webs

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Maureaud, Aurore; Gascuel, Didier; Colléter, Mathieu

    2017-01-01

    The development of fisheries in the oceans, and other human drivers such as climate warming, have led to changes in species abundance, assemblages, trophic interactions, and ultimately in the functioning of marine food webs. Here, using a trophodynamic approach and global databases of catches...... and life history traits of marine species, we tested the hypothesis that anthropogenic ecological impacts may have led to changes in the global parameters defining the transfers of biomass within the food web. First, we developed two indicators to assess such changes: the Time Cumulated Indicator (TCI......) measuring the residence time of biomass within the food web, and the Efficiency Cumulated Indicator (ECI) quantifying the fraction of secondary production reaching the top of the trophic chain. Then, we assessed, at the large marine ecosystem scale, the worldwide change of these two indicators over the 1950...

  16. Trophic magnification of organic chemicals: A global synthesis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walters, David; Jardine, T.D.; Cade, Brian S.; Kidd, K.A.; Muir, D.C.G.; Leipzig-Scott, Peter C.

    2016-01-01

    Production of organic chemicals (OCs) is increasing exponentially, and some OCs biomagnify through food webs to potentially toxic levels. Biomagnification under field conditions is best described by trophic magnification factors (TMFs; per trophic level change in log-concentration of a chemical) which have been measured for more than two decades. Syntheses of TMF behavior relative to chemical traits and ecosystem properties are lacking. We analyzed >1500 TMFs to identify OCs predisposed to biomagnify and to assess ecosystem vulnerability. The highest TMFs were for OCs that are slowly metabolized by animals (metabolic rate kM  0.2 day–1). This probabilistic model provides a new global tool for screening existing and new OCs for their biomagnification potential.

  17. Deficiency of DNA fragmentation factor 45 results in reduced oocyte apoptosis in response to doxorubicin

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Mei Dong; Yunxia Fan; Nicholas J Toepfer; Jianhua Zhang

    2007-01-01

    @@ Apoptosis plays a prominent role in ovarian development and function [1-4]. During follicle development, the vast majority of follicles undergo atresia as a consequence of apoptosis of constituent oocyte or follicular cells, or both, failing to complete the maturation process. Atresia occurs at all stages of follicular development during the growth and development of follicles. Atresia of the primordial and primary follicles is initiated by oocyte apoptosis, followed by the death of the granulosa cells [1-4]. In comparison, the reduction of the large number of growing follicles to a single ovulatory follicle is achieved primarily by the cell death of granulosa cells [1-4]. Members of the Bcl-2 and caspase families play important roles in the regulation of ovarian cell death, both in follicle development and in response to chemotherapeutic agents [5].

  18. Reducing Gridlock on the Grid: Utility Trends in Managing Peak Electric Load through Residential Demand Response

    Science.gov (United States)

    McDonald, Betsy

    Utilities across the United States are piloting residential demand response programs to help manage peak electric demand. Using publicly available program evaluations, this thesis analyzes nine such programs to uncover and synthesize the range of program offerings, goals, enrollment strategies, and customer experiences. This review reveals that program participation, components, and results differ based on a variety of factors, including geographic characteristics, program goals, and implementation strategies. The diversity of program designs and evaluation findings suggests an underlying tension between the need to generate cost-effective program impacts and the desire to increase accessibility so that program benefits are not exclusive to certain segments of the population. For more significant and impactful engagement, program goals may need to shift. State level policy support could help shift program goals toward increasing program accessibility. Future research should explore creative strategies that target existing barriers and allow for more inclusive deployment.

  19. Cardiorespiratory responses and reduced apneic time to cold-water face immersion after high intensity exercise.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Konstantinidou, Sylvia; Soultanakis, Helen

    2016-01-01

    Apnea after exercise may evoke a neurally mediated conflict that may affect apneic time and create a cardiovascular strain. The physiological responses, induced by apnea with face immersion in cold water (10 °C), after a 3-min exercise bout, at 85% of VO2max,were examined in 10 swimmers. A pre-selected 40-s apnea, completed after rest (AAR), could not be met after exercise (AAE), and was terminated with an agonal gasp reflex, and a reduction of apneic time, by 75%. Bradycardia was evident with immersion after both, 40-s of AAR and after AAE (Pexercise without apnea was not equally elevated. The activation of neurally opposing functions as those elicited by the diving reflex after high intensity exercise may create an autonomic conflict possibly related to oxygen-conserving reflexes stimulated by the trigeminal nerve, and those elicited by exercise.

  20. Mechanical Flexibility Reduces the Foreign Body Response to Long-Term Implanted Microelectrodes in Rabbit Cortex

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sohal, Harbaljit S.; Clowry, Gavin J.

    2016-01-01

    Micromotion between the brain and implanted electrodes is a major contributor to the failure of invasive microelectrodes. Movements of the electrode tip cause recording instabilities while spike amplitudes decline over the weeks/months post-implantation due to glial cell activation caused by sustained mechanical trauma. We compared the glial response over a 26–96 week period following implantation in the rabbit cortex of microwires and a novel flexible electrode. Horizontal sections were used to obtain a depth profile of the radial distribution of microglia, astrocytes and neurofilament. We found that the flexible electrode was associated with decreased gliosis compared to the microwires over these long indwelling periods. This was in part due to a decrease in overall microgliosis and enhanced neuronal density around the flexible probe, especially at longer periods of implantation. PMID:27788240

  1. Optimum connecting dampers to reduce the seismic responses of parallel structures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhu, H. P.; Ge, D. D.; Huang, X.

    2011-04-01

    Parameters of connecting dampers between two adjacent structures and twin-tower structure with large podium are optimized through theoretical analysis. The connecting visco-elastic damper (VED) is represented by the Kelvin model and the connecting viscous fluid damper (VFD) is represented by the Maxwell model. Two optimization criteria are selected to minimize the vibration energy of the primary structure and to minimize the vibration energy of both structures. Two representative numerical examples of adjacent structures and one three-dimensional finite element model of a twin-tower with podium structure are used to verify the correctness of the theoretical approach. On the one hand, by means of theoretical analysis, the first natural circular frequencies and total mass of the two structures can be taken as parameters in the general formula to get the optimal parameters of the coupling dampers. On the other hand, using the Kanai-Tajimi filtered white-noise ground motion model and several actual earthquake records, the appropriate parameters of two types of linking dampers are obtained through extensive parametric studies. By comparison, it can be found that the results of parametric studies are consistent with the results of theoretical studies for the two types of dampers under the two optimization criteria. The effectiveness of VED and VFD is investigated in terms of the seismic response reduction of the neighboring structures. The numerical results demonstrate that the seismic response and vibration energy of parallel structures are mitigated significantly. The performances of VED and VFD are comparable to one another. The explicit formula of VED and VFD can help engineers in application of coupled structure control strategies.

  2. Concurrent influenza vaccination reduces anti-FVIII antibody responses in murine hemophilia A.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lai, Jesse D; Moorehead, Paul C; Sponagle, Kate; Steinitz, Katharina N; Reipert, Birgit M; Hough, Christine; Lillicrap, David

    2016-06-30

    Inflammatory signals such as pathogen- and danger-associated molecular patterns have been hypothesized as risk factors for the initiation of the anti-factor VIII (FVIII) immune response seen in 25% to 30% of patients with severe hemophilia A (HA). In these young patients, vaccines may be coincidentally administered in close proximity with initial exposure to FVIII, thereby providing a source of such stimuli. Here, we investigated the effects of 3 vaccines commonly used in pediatric patients on FVIII immunogenicity in a humanized HA murine model with variable tolerance to recombinant human FVIII (rhFVIII). Mice vaccinated intramuscularly against the influenza vaccine prior to multiple infusions of rhFVIII exhibited a decreased incidence of rhFVIII-specific neutralizing and nonneutralizing antibodies. Similar findings were observed with the addition of an adjuvant. Upon exposure to media from influenza- or FVIII-stimulated lymph node or splenic lymphocytes, naïve CD4(+) lymphocytes preferentially migrated toward media from influenza-stimulated cells, indicating that antigen competition, by means of lymphocyte recruitment to the immunization site, is a potential mechanism for the observed decrease in FVIII immunogenicity. We also observed no differences in incidence or titer of rhFVIII-specific antibodies and inhibitors in mice exposed to the live-attenuated measles-mumps-rubella vaccine regardless of route of administration. Together, our results suggest that concomitant FVIII exposure and vaccination against influenza does not increase the risk of inhibitor formation and may in fact decrease anti-FVIII immune responses. © 2016 by The American Society of Hematology.

  3. Natural chemical tags reveal trophic resilience of demersal fish to hypoxia exposure

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mohan, J. A.; Walther, B. D.

    2016-02-01

    Seasonal hypoxia may affect benthic ecosystems by altering trophic relationships between benthic prey and mobile predators. Identifying the sublethal effects of hypoxia on mobile fishes is difficult without long-term chronological geochemical records of individual exposure histories. In this study, trace element profiles in otoliths of demersal Atlantic croaker Micropogonias undulatus collected from the "Dead Zone" region of the northern Gulf of Mexico were used to quantify environmental exposure histories over the 2-3 months prior to capture. Otoliths were analyzed to quantify profiles of manganese (Mn) as a proxy of redox conditions and barium (Ba) as a proxy of estuarine habitat use. Estuarine and hypoxia exposure indices based on these proxies clustered fish into four recent exposure groups that included: late estuarine migrants, early estuarine migrants, normoxic coastal residents, and hypoxic coastal resident fish. Muscle tissue stable isotope values of carbon and nitrogen that also reflected 2-3 months of recent dietary history were used to estimate isotope niche area using standard ellipses. Fish demonstrating more estuarine habitat use displayed larger niche areas, while normoxic and hypoxic coastal resident fish exhibited small and statistically similar niche areas. These results suggest trophic resilience of demersal croaker to seasonal hypoxia in the northern Gulf of Mexico. A combination of otolith chemistry and tissue stable isotopes further enhances our understanding of responses to sublethal hypoxia and the potential consequences for ecosystem functioning.

  4. Validation of trophic and anthropic underwater noise as settlement trigger in blue mussels

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jolivet, Aurélie; Tremblay, Rejean; Olivier, Fréderic; Gervaise, Cédric; Sonier, Rémi; Genard, Bertrand; Chauvaud, Laurent

    2016-09-01

    Like the majority of benthic invertebrates, the blue mussel Mytilus edulis has a bentho-pelagic cycle with its larval settlement being a complex phenomenon involving numerous factors. Among these factors, underwater noise and pelagic trophic conditions have been weakly studied in previous researches. Under laboratory conditions, we tested the hypothesis that picoplankton assimilation by the pediveliger blue mussel larvae acts as a food cue that interacts with anthropic underwater sound to stimulate settlement. We used 13C-labeling microalgae to validate the assimilation of different picoplankton species in the tissues of pediveliger larvae. Our results clearly confirm our hypothesis with a significant synergic effect of these two factors. However, only the picoeukaryotes strains assimilated by larvae stimulated the settlement, whereas the non-ingested picocyanobacteria did not. Similar positive responses were observed with underwater sound characterized by low frequency vessel noises. The combination of both factors (trophic and vessel noise) drastically increased the mussel settlement by an order of 4 compared to the control (without picoplankton and noise). Settlement levels ranged from 16.5 to 67% in 67 h.

  5. Comparison of contaminants from different trophic levels and ecosystems

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Dietz, R.; Riget, F.; Cleemann, M.

    2000-01-01

    ecosystems. Of the nine compounds presented, seven (Cd, Hg, Se, Sigma PCB, Sigma DDT, Sigma HCH, HCB) increased in concentration towards higher trophic levels. For these contaminants the concentrations in soil and aquatic sediment were in the same order of magnitude, whereas the concentrations in marine...... considerably less mercury but higher levels of Sigma PCB, Sigma DDT and HCB than other Arctic marine top consumers. (C) 2000 Elsevier Science B.V. All rights reserved....

  6. Trophic cascades result in large-scale coralline algae loss through differential grazer effects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Leary, Jennifer K; McClanahan, Timothy R

    2010-12-01

    Removal of predators can have strong indirect effects on primary producers through trophic cascades. Crustose coralline algae (CCA) are major primary producers worldwide that may be influenced by predator removal through changes in grazer composition and biomass. CCA have been most widely studied in Caribbean and temperate reefs, where cover increases with increasing grazer biomass due to removal of competitive fleshy algae. However, each of these systems has one dominant grazer type, herbivorous fishes or sea urchins, which may not be functionally equivalent. Where fishes and sea urchins co-occur, fishing can result in a phase shift in the grazing community with subsequent effects on CCA and other substrata. Kenyan reefs have herbivorous fishes and sea urchins, providing an opportunity to determine the relative impacts of each grazer type and evaluate potential human-induced trophic cascades. We hypothesized that fish benefit CCA, abundant sea urchins erode CCA, and that fishing indirectly reduces CCA cover by removing sea urchin predators. We used closures and fished reefs as a large-scale, long-term natural experiment to assess how fishing and resultant changes in communities affect CCA abundance. We used a short-term caging experiment to directly test the effects of grazing on CCA. CCA cover declined with increasing fish and sea urchin abundance, but the negative impact of sea urchin grazing was much stronger than that of fishes. Abundant sea urchins reduced the CCA growth rate to almost zero and prevented CCA accumulation. A warming event (El Niño Southern Oscillation, ENSO) occurred during the 18-year study and had a strong but short-term positive effect on CCA cover. However, the effect of the ENSO on CCA was lower in magnitude than the effect of sea urchin grazing. We compare our results with worldwide literature on bioerosion by fishes and sea urchins. Grazer influence depends on whether benefits of fleshy algae removal outweigh costs of grazer

  7. Oral glucosylceramide reduces 2,4-dinitrofluorobenzene induced inflammatory response in mice by reducing TNF-alpha levels and leukocyte infiltration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duan, Jingjing; Sugawara, Tatsuya; Sakai, Shota; Aida, Kazuhiko; Hirata, Takashi

    2011-06-01

    Sphingolipids are constituents of cellular membranes and play important roles as second messengers mediating cell functions. As significant components in foods, sphingolipids have been proven to be critical for human health. Moreover, diverse metabolic intermediates of sphingolipids are known to play key roles both in proinflammatory and in anti-inflammatory effects. However, the effect of dietary sphingolipids on inflammation is a complicated field that needs to be further assessed. Our study evaluated the effects of orally administered maize glucosylceramide (GluCer), one of the most conventional dietary sphingolipids, on inflammation using the 2,4-dinitro-1-fluorobenzene-treated BALB/c murine model. Oral administration of GluCer inhibited ear swelling and leukocyte infiltration to the inflammatory site, suggesting that dietary GluCer has anti-inflammatory properties. ELISA analyses revealed that oral administration of GluCer for 6 days had not modified the Th1/Th2 balance, but significantly down-regulated the activation of TNF-α at the inflammatory site. Based on these results, the down-regulation of TNF-α by dietary GluCer may suppress vascular permeability and reduce the migration of inflammatory cells. Our findings increase understanding of the actions of dietary sphingolipids on the balance of the immune response.

  8. Assessment of trophic status in Changjiang (Yangtze) River estuary

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2007-01-01

    The integrated methodology for the assessment of estuarine trophic status (ASSETS),which was extended and refined from the United States National Estuarine Eutrophication Assessment (NEEA), is a multi-parameter assessment system and has been widely used in eutrophication assessment in estuarine and coastal waters. The ASSETS was applied to evaluate the trophic status of the Changjiang (Yangtze) River estuary, one of the largest estuaries in the world. The following main results were obtained: (i) The estuarine export potential is "moderate susceptibility" due to the "moderate" dilution potential and "moderate" flushing potential; (ii) The overall human influence (OHI) index classified the impact of nutrients in the system as "high" due to the high level of nutrient discharge by the river which channels anthropogenic impacts in the catchments to the estuarine system; (iii) The overall eutrophic condition (OEC) in the estuary was classified into the "high" category due to frequent occurrence of nuisance and toxic algal blooms in the mixing and seawater zones; (iv) Since the nutrient loadings (e.g.,DIN) in the river is expected to continue to increase in the near future following the population increase and rapid economic growth throughout the drainage basin, the nutrient-related symptoms in the estuary are likely to substantially worsen, which leads to the "worsen high" category for the definition of future outlook (DFO). The combinations of the three components (i.e., OHI, OEC, and DFO) lead to an overall grade as "bad" for the trophic status in the Changjiang River estuary.

  9. Cryotherapy Reduces Inflammatory Response Without Altering Muscle Regeneration Process and Extracellular Matrix Remodeling of Rat Muscle.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vieira Ramos, Gracielle; Pinheiro, Clara Maria; Messa, Sabrina Peviani; Delfino, Gabriel Borges; Marqueti, Rita de Cássia; Salvini, Tania de Fátima; Durigan, Joao Luiz Quagliotti

    2016-01-04

    The application of cryotherapy is widely used in sports medicine today. Cooling could minimize secondary hypoxic injury through the reduction of cellular metabolism and injury area. Conflicting results have also suggested cryotherapy could delay and impair the regeneration process. There are no definitive findings about the effects of cryotherapy on the process of muscle regeneration. The aim of the present study was to evaluate the effects of a clinical-like cryotherapy on inflammation, regeneration and extracellular matrix (ECM) remodeling on the Tibialis anterior (TA) muscle of rats 3, 7 and 14 days post-injury. It was observed that the intermittent application of cryotherapy (three 30-minute sessions, every 2 h) in the first 48 h post-injury decreased inflammatory processes (mRNA levels of TNF-α, NF-κB, TGF-β and MMP-9 and macrophage percentage). Cryotherapy did not alter regeneration markers such as injury area, desmin and Myod expression. Despite regulating Collagen I and III and their growth factors, cryotherapy did not alter collagen deposition. In summary, clinical-like cryotherapy reduces the inflammatory process through the decrease of macrophage infiltration and the accumulation of the inflammatory key markers without influencing muscle injury area and ECM remodeling.

  10. Altered cell wall properties are responsible for ammonium-reduced aluminium accumulation in rice roots.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Wei; Zhao, Xue Qiang; Chen, Rong Fu; Dong, Xiao Ying; Lan, Ping; Ma, Jian Feng; Shen, Ren Fang

    2015-07-01

    The phytotoxicity of aluminium (Al) ions can be alleviated by ammonium (NH4(+)) in rice and this effect has been attributed to the decreased Al accumulation in the roots. Here, the effects of different nitrogen forms on cell wall properties were compared in two rice cultivars differing in Al tolerance. An in vitro Al-binding assay revealed that neither NH4(+) nor NO3(-) altered the Al-binding capacity of cell walls, which were extracted from plants not previously exposed to N sources. However, cell walls extracted from NH4(+)-supplied roots displayed lower Al-binding capacity than those from NO3(-)-supplied roots when grown in non-buffered solutions. Fourier-transform infrared microspectroscopy analysis revealed that, compared with NO3(-)-supplied roots, NH4(+)-supplied roots possessed fewer Al-binding groups (-OH and COO-) and lower contents of pectin and hemicellulose. However, when grown in pH-buffered solutions, these differences in the cell wall properties were not observed. Further analysis showed that the Al-binding capacity and properties of cell walls were also altered by pHs alone. Taken together, our results indicate that the NH4(+)-reduced Al accumulation was attributed to the altered cell wall properties triggered by pH decrease due to NH4(+) uptake rather than direct competition for the cell wall binding sites between Al(3+) and NH4(+).

  11. Response of four foliage plants to heated soil and reduced air temperatures

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bodnaruk, W.H. Jr.; Mills, T.W.; Ingram, D.L.

    1981-01-01

    Tip cuttings of Dieffenbachia maculata (Lodd.) G. Donn Exotic Perfection Compacta' and Aglaonema commutatum Schott Silver Queen and single eye cuttings of Epipremnum aureum (Linden and Andre) Bunt, and Philodendron scandens oxycardium (Schott) Bunt. were propagated in combinations of 4 minimum air temperatures, 45/sup 0/, 50/sup 0/, 55/sup 0/ and 60/sup 0/F (7.2/sup 0/, 10/sup 0/, 12.7/sup 0/, 15.5/sup 0/C), and 2 soil temperature treatments; controlled 70/sup 0/F (21/sup 0/C) minimum and variable. Maintaining minimum soil temperatures at 70/sup 0/F reduced production times for rooted Dieffenbachia and Aglaonema tips by 45% and of Epipremnum and Philodendron suitable for 3 inch pots by 35% and 25%, respectively, regardless of minimum air temperature. Minimum air temperature had little effect on Dieffenbachia or Aglaonema root number and length at 70/sup 0/F soil temperature. Similarly shoot length and number of leaves of Philodendron and Epipremnum were not affected by minimum air temperatures with 70/sup 0/F soil temperature. Plant quality was uniformly high in all crops at the 70/sup 0/F soil minimum for all air temperatures except Epipremnum which was chlorotic at 45/sup 0/F. A description of a warm water in-benching heating system is included. 6 references, 2 figures, 9 tables.

  12. Alpha interferon-induced antiviral response noncytolytically reduces replication defective adenovirus DNA in MDBK cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guo, Ju-Tao; Zhou, Tianlun; Guo, Haitao; Block, Timothy M

    2007-12-01

    Although alpha interferon (IFN-alpha) is of benefit in the treatment of viral hepatitis B, HBV replication has been refractory to the cytokine in commonly used hepatocyte-derived cell lines. In search for a cell culture system to study the mechanism by which IFN-alpha inhibits HBV replication, we infected a variety of cell lines with an adenoviral vector containing a replication competent 1.3-fold genome length HBV DNA (AdHBV) and followed by incubation with IFN-alpha. We found that IFN-alpha efficiently decreased the level of HBV DNA replicative intermediates in AdHBV infected Madin-Darby bovine kidney (MDBK) cells. Further analysis revealed, surprisingly, that IFN-alpha did not directly inhibit HBV replication, rather the amount of adenovirus DNA in the nuclei of MDBK cells was reduced. As a consequence, HBV RNA transcription and DNA replication were inhibited. Experiments with adenoviral vector expressing a green fluorescent protein (GFP) further supported the notion that IFN-alpha treatment noncytolytically eliminated adenovirus DNA, but did not kill the vector infected MDBK cells. Our data suggest that IFN-alpha-induced antiviral program is able to discriminate host cellular DNA from episomal viral DNA and might represent a novel pathway of interferon mediate innate defense against DNA virus infections.

  13. Tissue Taurine Depletion Alters Metabolic Response to Exercise and Reduces Running Capacity in Mice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Takashi Ito

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Taurine is a sulfur-containing amino acid found in very high concentration in skeletal muscle. Taurine deficient mice engineered by knocking out the taurine transporter gene exhibit skeletal muscle wasting, structural defects, and exercise intolerance. In the present study, we investigated the mechanism underlying the development of metabolic abnormalities and exercise intolerance in muscle of the TauTKO phenotype. Running speed and endurance time of TauTKO mice were lower than those of control mice. Blood lactate level was elevated by >3-fold during treadmill running in TauTKO mice but remained largely unaltered by exercise in WT mice. Blood glucose was cleared faster during treadmill running in TauTKO mice than WT mice. AMP-activated kinase (AMPK β-2 subunit was reduced in TauTKO muscle concomitant with a reduction in α1 and α2 subunits of AMPK. The level of PPARα and its targets, Gpx3, Cpt2, and Echs1, were also decreased in TauTKO muscle. Collectively, taurine depletion impairs metabolic adaptation to exercise in skeletal muscle, a phenomenon associated with a downregulation of AMPK and diminished NADH utilization by the mitochondrial respiratory chain. These findings suggest a crucial role of taurine in regulating energy metabolism in skeletal muscle of exercising TauTKO mice, changes that contribute to impaired exercise endurance.

  14. Vitamin D Deficiency Reduces the Immune Response, Phagocytosis Rate, and Intracellular Killing Rate of Microglial Cells

    Science.gov (United States)

    Onken, Marie Luise; Schütze, Sandra; Redlich, Sandra; Götz, Alexander; Hanisch, Uwe-Karsten; Bertsch, Thomas; Ribes, Sandra; Hanenberg, Andrea; Schneider, Simon; Bollheimer, Cornelius; Sieber, Cornel; Nau, Roland

    2014-01-01

    Meningitis and meningoencephalitis caused by Escherichia coli are associated with high rates of mortality and neurological sequelae. A high prevalence of neurological disorders has been observed in geriatric populations at risk of hypovitaminosis D. Vitamin D has potent effects on human immunity, including induction of antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) and suppression of T-cell proliferation, but its influence on microglial cells is unknown. The purpose of the present study was to determine the effects of vitamin D deficiency on the phagocytosis rate, intracellular killing, and immune response of murine microglial cultures after stimulation with the Toll-like receptor (TLR) agonists tripalmitoyl-S-glyceryl-cysteine (TLR1/2), poly(I·C) (TLR3), lipopolysaccharide (TLR4), and CpG oligodeoxynucleotide (TLR9). Upon stimulation with high concentrations of TLR agonists, the release of tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-α) and interleukin 6 (IL-6) was decreased in vitamin D-deficient compared to that in vitamin D-sufficient microglial cultures. Phagocytosis of E. coli K1 after stimulation of microglial cells with high concentrations of TLR3, -4, and -9 agonists and intracellular killing of E. coli K1 after stimulation with high concentrations of all TLR agonists were lower in vitamin D-deficient microglial cells than in the respective control cells. Our observations suggest that vitamin D deficiency may impair the resistance of the brain against bacterial infections. PMID:24686054

  15. Lateral asymmetry and reduced forward masking effect in early brainstem auditory evoked responses in schizophrenia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Källstrand, Johan; Nehlstedt, Sara Fristedt; Sköld, Mia Ling; Nielzén, Sören

    2012-04-30

    Individuals diagnosed with schizophrenia show deficiencies of basic neurophysiological sorting mechanisms. This study further investigated this issue, focusing on the two phenomena, laterality of coding and auditory forward masking. A specific audiometric method for use in psychiatry was the measuring set up to register brain stem audiograms (ABRs). A sample of 49 schizophrenic patients was compared with three control groups consisting of healthy reference subjects (n=49), attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) patients (n=29), Asperger syndrome (AS) patients (n=13) and drug-induced psychotic patients (n=14). Schizophrenic patients showed significant abnormal laterality of brainstem activity in wave II of the auditory brainstem response (ABR) in comparison with all other study groups. Forward masking effects in the superior olive complex were coded significantly differently by schizophrenic patients compared to control groups except for the AS group. The results suggest deficits in the coding of auditory stimuli in the lower parts of the auditory pathway in schizophrenia and indicate that increased peripheral lateral asymmetry and forward masking aberrances could be neurophysiological markers for the disorder. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. PPARgamma agonist curcumin reduces the amyloid-beta-stimulated inflammatory responses in primary astrocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Hong-Mei; Zhao, Yan-Xin; Zhang, Shi; Liu, Gui-Dong; Kang, Wen-Yan; Tang, Hui-Dong; Ding, Jian-Qing; Chen, Sheng-Di

    2010-01-01

    Alzheimer's disease (AD) is the most common age-related neurodegenerative disorder. Accumulating data indicate that astrocytes play an important role in the neuroinflammation related to the pathogenesis of AD. It has been shown that microglia and astrocytes are activated in AD brain and amyloid-beta (Abeta) can increase the expression of cyclooxygenase 2 (COX-2), interleukin-1, and interleukin-6. Suppressing the inflammatory response caused by activated astrocytes may help to inhibit the development of AD. Curcumin is a major constituent of the yellow curry spice turmeric and proved to be a potential anti-inflammatory drug in arthritis and colitis. There is a low age-adjusted prevalence of AD in India, a country where turmeric powder is commonly used as a culinary compound. Curcumin has been shown to suppress activated astroglia in amyloid-beta protein precursor transgenic mice. The real mechanism by which curcumin inhibits activated astroglia is poorly understood. Here we report that the expression of COX-2 and glial fibrillary acidic protein were enhanced and that of peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor gamma (PPARgamma) was decreased in Abeta(25-35)-treated astrocytes. In line with these results, nuclear factor-kappaB translocation was increased in the presence of Abeta. All these can be reversed by the pretreatment of curcumin. Furthermore, GW9662, a PPARgamma antagonist, can abolish the anti-inflammatory effect of curcumin. These results show that curcumin might act as a PPARgamma agonist to inhibit the inflammation in Abeta-treated astrocytes.

  17. Reducing Design Risk Using Robust Design Methods: A Dual Response Surface Approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Unal, Resit; Yeniay, Ozgur; Lepsch, Roger A. (Technical Monitor)

    2003-01-01

    Space transportation system conceptual design is a multidisciplinary process containing considerable element of risk. Risk here is defined as the variability in the estimated (output) performance characteristic of interest resulting from the uncertainties in the values of several disciplinary design and/or operational parameters. Uncertainties from one discipline (and/or subsystem) may propagate to another, through linking parameters and the final system output may have a significant accumulation of risk. This variability can result in significant deviations from the expected performance. Therefore, an estimate of variability (which is called design risk in this study) together with the expected performance characteristic value (e.g. mean empty weight) is necessary for multidisciplinary optimization for a robust design. Robust design in this study is defined as a solution that minimizes variability subject to a constraint on mean performance characteristics. Even though multidisciplinary design optimization has gained wide attention and applications, the treatment of uncertainties to quantify and analyze design risk has received little attention. This research effort explores the dual response surface approach to quantify variability (risk) in critical performance characteristics (such as weight) during conceptual design.

  18. Nanoscale histone localization in live cells reveals reduced chromatin mobility in response to DNA damage.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Jing; Vidi, Pierre-Alexandre; Lelièvre, Sophie A; Irudayaraj, Joseph M K

    2015-02-01

    Nuclear functions including gene expression, DNA replication and genome maintenance intimately rely on dynamic changes in chromatin organization. The movements of chromatin fibers might play important roles in the regulation of these fundamental processes, yet the mechanisms controlling chromatin mobility are poorly understood owing to methodological limitations for the assessment of chromatin movements. Here, we present a facile and quantitative technique that relies on photoactivation of GFP-tagged histones and paired-particle tracking to measure chromatin mobility in live cells. We validate the method by comparing live cells to ATP-depleted cells and show that chromatin movements in mammalian cells are predominantly energy dependent. We also find that chromatin diffusion decreases in response to DNA breaks induced by a genotoxic drug or by the ISceI meganuclease. Timecourse analysis after cell exposure to ionizing radiation indicates that the decrease in chromatin mobility is transient and precedes subsequent increased mobility. Future applications of the method in the DNA repair field and beyond are discussed.

  19. High Amylose White Rice Reduces Post-Prandial Glycemic Response but Not Appetite in Humans

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alison M. Zenel

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available The present study compared the effects of three rice cultivars on postprandial glycemic control and appetite. A single-blind, randomized, crossover clinical trial was performed with 18 healthy subjects, nine males and nine females. Three treatments were administered at three separate study visits: commercially available conventional white rice (short grain, specialty high amylose white rice 1 (Dixiebelle, and specialty high amylose white rice 2 (Rondo. Postprandial capillary blood glucose, venous blood glucose and insulin measurements, and appetite visual analog scale (VAS surveys were done over the course of two hours. The capillary blood glucose concentrations were significantly lower for Rondo compared to short grain rice at 30 min, and for Dixiebelle and Rondo compared to short grain rice at 45, 60, and 120 min. Capillary blood glucose area under the curve (AUC was significantly lower for Dixiebelle and Rondo compared to short grain rice. Subjects were significantly more hungry at 30 min after Dixiebelle intake than Rondo intake, but there were no other significant effects in appetite ratings. The present study determined that intake of high amylose rice with resistant starch (RS can attenuate postprandial blood glucose and insulin response in comparison to short grain rice.

  20. Aroclor 1254 exposure reduces disease resistance and innate immune responses in fasted arctic charr

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maule, A.G.; Jorgensen, E.H.; Vijayan, M.M.; Killie, J.-E.A.

    2005-01-01

    To examine the immunological impacts of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) in an environmentally relevant way, we orally contaminated Arctic charr (Salvelinus alpinus) with Aroclor 1254. After contamination, fish were either fed (0 and 100 mg Aroclor 1254 kg-1 fish wt) or fasted (0, 1, 10, and 100 mg kg-1) to mimic cycles of feeding-fasting experienced by Arctic animals. After four months, PCB concentrations in muscle were the same in fasted and fed fish; however, PCBs in kidneys of fed fish were 33 to 50% of those in fasted fish. Arctic charr were exposed to Aeromonas salmonicida, the bacteria responsible for furunculosis, by cohabitation with infected conspecifics. Fasted fish had a significant trend toward lower survival with higher dose of PCBs - from 68% in controls to 48% in treatment involving 100 mg kg-1. Independent of PCB contamination, fed fish had the lowest survival; we attribute this to stress associated with establishing and maintaining feeding hierarchies. A significant decrease in the activity of lysozyme was observed in skin mucus, as was hemagglutination ability of a putative rhamnose lectin in fasted, but not in fed, PCB-treated fish. These results demonstrate the immunosuppressive effects of PCBs on Arctic charr, and they illustrate the importance of considering environmentally relevant nutritional status in ecotoxicological studies.

  1. Reduced firing rates of high threshold motor units in response to eccentric overload.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Balshaw, Tom G; Pahar, Madhu; Chesham, Ross; Macgregor, Lewis J; Hunter, Angus M

    2017-01-01

    Acute responses of motor units were investigated during submaximal voluntary isometric tasks following eccentric overload (EO) and constant load (CL) knee extension resistance exercise. Ten healthy resistance-trained participants performed four experimental test sessions separated by 5 days over a 20 day period. Two sessions involved constant load and the other two used eccentric overload. EO and CL used both sessions for different target knee eccentric extension phases; one at 2 sec and the other at 4 sec. Maximal voluntary contractions (MVC) and isometric trapezoid efforts for 10 sec at 70% MVC were completed before and after each intervention and decomposed electromyography was used to measure motor unit firing rate. The firing rate of later recruited, high-threshold motor units declined following the 2-sec EO but was maintained following 2sec CL (P units were maintained for both loading types following 4-sec extension phases. MVC and rate of force development where maintained following both EO and CL and 2 and 4 sec phases. This study demonstrates a slower firing rate of high-threshold motor units following fast eccentric overload while MVC was maintained. This suggests that there was a neuromuscular stimulus without cost to the force-generating capacity of the knee extensors. © 2017 The Authors. Physiological Reports published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. on behalf of The Physiological Society and the American Physiological Society.

  2. The polyphenol-rich baobab fruit (Adansonia digitata L.) reduces starch digestion and glycemic response in humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coe, Shelly A; Clegg, Miriam; Armengol, Mar; Ryan, Lisa

    2013-11-01

    The baobab fruit (Adansonia digitata L.) is found throughout regions of Africa and is becoming increasingly recognized for its high nutrient and polyphenol content. Polyphenols have been beneficial for their effects on reducing the glycemic response (GR) and for improving various other metabolic parameters. Based on previous research, it was hypothesized that the baobab fruit extract would reduce starch digestion in vitro and would show potential for reducing the GR and for increasing satiety and diet-induced thermogenesis in humans. Six extracts of baobab from 6 different locations in Africa were measured for their antioxidant and polyphenol content using the ferric ion-reducing antioxidant power and the Folin-Ciocalteu methods, respectively. Baobab extract was baked into white bread at different doses to determine the optimal dose for reducing starch breakdown and sugar release from white bread after an in vitro digestion procedure. In vivo, baobab extract was consumed in solution at both a low-dose (18.5 g) and a high-dose (37 g) aqueous drink in 250 mL of water along with white bread, and resulting GR, satiety, and postprandial energy expenditure were measured. All extracts in this study were shown to be good sources of polyphenols. Baobab fruit extract added to white bread at 1.88 % significantly (P < .05) reduced rapidly digestible starch from white bread samples. In vivo, the baobab fruit extract at both low and high doses significantly (P < .05) reduced GR, although there was no significant effect on satiety or on energy expenditure.

  3. Low-dimensional reduced-order models for statistical response and uncertainty quantification: Barotropic turbulence with topography

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qi, Di; Majda, Andrew J.

    2017-03-01

    A low-dimensional reduced-order statistical closure model is developed for quantifying the uncertainty to changes in forcing in a barotropic turbulent system with topography involving interactions between small-scale motions and a large-scale mean flow. Imperfect model sensitivity is improved through a recent mathematical strategy for calibrating model errors in a training phase, where information theory and linear statistical response theory are combined in a systematic fashion to achieve the optimal model parameters. Statistical theories about a Gaussian invariant measure and the exact statistical energy equations are also developed for the truncated barotropic equations that can be used to improve the imperfect model prediction skill. A stringent paradigm model of 57 degrees of freedom is used to display the feasibility of the reduced-order methods. This simple model creates large-scale zonal mean flow shifting directions from westward to eastward jets with an abrupt change in amplitude when perturbations are applied, and prototype blocked and unblocked patterns can be generated in this simple model similar to the real natural system. Principal statistical responses in mean and variance can be captured by the reduced-order models with desirable accuracy and efficiency with only 3 resolved modes. An even more challenging regime with non-Gaussian equilibrium statistics using the fluctuation equations is also tested in the reduced-order models with accurate prediction using the first 5 resolved modes. These reduced-order models also show potential for uncertainty quantification and prediction in more complex realistic geophysical turbulent dynamical systems.

  4. Reef Fishes at All Trophic Levels Respond Positively to Effective Marine Protected Areas.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    German A Soler

    Full Text Available Marine Protected Areas (MPAs offer a unique opportunity to test the assumption that fishing pressure affects some trophic groups more than others. Removal of larger predators through fishing is often suggested to have positive flow-on effects for some lower trophic groups, in which case protection from fishing should result in suppression of lower trophic groups as predator populations recover. We tested this by assessing differences in the trophic structure of reef fish communities associated with 79 MPAs and open-access sites worldwide, using a standardised quantitative dataset on reef fish community structure. The biomass of all major trophic groups (higher carnivores, benthic carnivores, planktivores and herbivores was significantly greater (by 40% - 200% in effective no-take MPAs relative to fished open-access areas. This effect was most pronounced for individuals in large size classes, but with no size class of any trophic group showing signs of depressed biomass in MPAs, as predicted from higher predator abundance. Thus, greater biomass in effective MPAs implies that exploitation on shallow rocky and coral reefs negatively affects biomass of all fish trophic groups and size classes. These direct effects of fishing on trophic structure appear stronger than any top down effects on lower trophic levels that would be imposed by intact predator populations. We propose that exploitation affects fish assemblages at all trophic levels, and that local ecosystem function is generally modified by fishing.

  5. The ecophysiology of sulfur isotope fractionation by sulfate reducing bacteria in response to variable environmental conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leavitt, W.; Bradley, A. S.; Johnston, D. T.; Pereira, I. A. C.; Venceslau, S.; Wallace, C.

    2014-12-01

    Microbial sulfate reducers (MSR) drive the Earth's biogeochemical sulfur cycle. At the heart of this energy metabolism is a cascade of redox transformations coupling organic carbon and/or hydrogen oxidation to the dissimilatory reduction of sulfate to sulfide. The sulfide produced is depleted in the heavier isotopes of sulfur relative to sulfate. The magnitude of discrimination (fractionation) depends on: i) the cell-specific sulfate reduction rate (csSRR, Kaplan & Rittenberg (1964) Can. J. Microbio.; Chambers et al. (1975) Can. J. Microbio; Sim et al. (2011) GCA; Leavitt et al. (2013) PNAS), ii) the ambient sulfate concentration (Harrison & Thode (1958) Research; Habicht et al. (2002) Science; Bradley et al. in review), iii) both sulfate and electron donor availability, or iv) an intrinsic physiological limitation (e.g. cellular division rate). When neither sulfate nor electron donor limits csSRR a more complex function relates the magnitude of isotope fractionation to cell physiology and environmental conditions. In recent and on-going work we have examined the importance of enzyme-specific fractionation factors, as well as the influence of electron donor or electron acceptor availability under carefully controlled culture conditions (e.g. Leavitt et al. (2013) PNAS). In light of recent advances in MSR genetics and biochemistry we utilize well-characterized mutant strains, along with a continuous-culture methodology (Leavitt et al. (2013) PNAS) to further probe the fractionation capacity of this metabolism under controlled physiological conditions. We present our latest findings on the magnitude of S and D/H isotope fractionation in both wild type and mutant strains. We will discuss these in light of recent theoretical advances (Wing & Halevy (2014) PNAS), examining the mode and relevance of MSR isotope fractionation in the laboratory to modern and ancient environmental settings, particularly anoxic marine sediments.

  6. Reducing Health Disparities and Enhancing the Responsible Conduct of Research Involving LGBT Youth.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fisher, Celia B; Mustanski, Brian

    2014-09-01

    Although there is clearly a need for evidenced-based behavioral or biomedical prevention or treatment programs for suicide, substance abuse, and sexual health targeted to members of the LGBT population under the age of eighteen, few such programs exist, due in substantial part to limited research knowledge. Ambiguities in regulations that govern human subjects protections and the related inconsistencies in institutional review board (IRB) interpretations of regulatory language are the key reason for the lack of rigorous clinical trial evidence to support treatment choices and prevention approaches to reducing health disparities for this population. Given the socially sensitive nature of suicide, substance abuse, and HIV and STI research in general and LGBT research specifically, in the absence of empirical data to guide their decisions, IRBs must often rely on subjective judgments of minimal risk, which can lead to overestimation of the magnitude and probability of psychological, social, and informational harms that might arise from LGBT youth participation in clinical trials. In addition, more than other youth, LGBT adolescents whose families are unaware of their sexual orientation or gender identity or whose families have victimized them on account of it may be reluctant to participate in studies that require guardian permission. This, in turn, intensifies problems of recruitment and unbiased sampling. However, many IRBs are reluctant to apply federal regulations permitting waiver of guardian permission under conditions in which such permission is clearly not "feasible" or "reasonable" to require. Consequently, many investigators have excluded LGBT individuals under eighteen years of age in health intervention research proposals because of anticipated or actual difficulties obtaining IRB approval. This situation is in conflict with current ethical discourse focusing on the right of youths to participate in trials that will protect them from receiving

  7. Removal of half the sympathetic innervation does not reduce vasoconstrictor responses in rat tail artery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tripovic, Diana; McLachlan, Elspeth M; Brock, James A

    2013-06-01

    Following reinnervation of denervated rat tail arteries, nerve-evoked contractions are at least as large as those evoked in normally innervated arteries despite a much lower nerve terminal density. Here nerve-evoked contractions have been investigated after transection of half the sympathetic innervation of normal tail arteries. After 1 week, the noradrenergic plexus 50-70 mm along the tail was about half as dense as control. Excitatory junction potentials recorded in smooth muscle cells of arterial segments isolated in vitro were half their normal amplitude. Surprisingly, nerve-evoked contractions of isometrically mounted segments were not reduced in amplitude, as was also the case after only 3 days. After 1 week, enhancement of nerve-evoked contractions by blocking either neuronal re-uptake of noradrenaline with desmethylimipramine or prejunctional α2-adrenoceptors with idazoxan was similar to control, suggesting that these mechanisms are matched to the number of innervating axons. The relative contribution of postjunctional α2-adrenoceptors to contractions evoked by long trains of stimuli was enhanced but that of α1-adrenoceptors was unchanged. Transiently, sensitivity to the α1-adrenoceptor agonist phenylephrine was slightly increased. After 7 weeks, amplitudes of nerve-evoked contractions remained similar to control, and sensitivity to phenylephrine had recovered but that to the α2-adrenoceptor agonist clonidine was slightly raised. The normal amplitude of nerve-evoked contractions after partial denervation is only partly explained by the greater contribution of α2-adrenoceptors. While the post-receptor mechanisms activated by nerve-released transmitter may be modified to amplify the contractions after partial denervation, our findings suggest that these mechanisms are normally saturated, at least in this artery.

  8. Budesonide and formoterol reduce early innate anti-viral immune responses in vitro.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Janet M Davies

    Full Text Available Asthma is a chronic inflammatory airways disease in which respiratory viral infections frequently trigger exacerbations. Current treatment of asthma with combinations of inhaled corticosteroids and long acting beta2 agonists improves asthma control and reduces exacerbations but what impact this might have on innate anti-viral immunity is unclear. We investigated the in vitro effects of asthma drugs on innate anti-viral immunity. Peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC from healthy and asthmatic donors were cultured for 24 hours with the Toll-like receptor 7 agonist, imiquimod, or rhinovirus 16 (RV16 in the presence of budesonide and/or formoterol. Production of proinflammatory cytokines and expression of anti-viral intracellular signalling molecules were measured by ELISA and RT-PCR respectively. In PBMC from healthy donors, budesonide alone inhibited IP-10 and IL-6 production induced by imiquimod in a concentration-dependent manner and the degree of inhibition was amplified when budesonide and formoterol were used in combination. Formoterol alone had little effect on these parameters, except at high concentrations (10⁻⁶ M when IL-6 production increased. In RV16 stimulated PBMC, the combination of budesonide and formoterol inhibited IFNα and IP-10 production in asthmatic as well as healthy donors. Combination of budesonide and formoterol also inhibited RV16-stimulated expression of the type I IFN induced genes myxovirus protein A and 2', 5' oligoadenylate synthetise. Notably, RV16 stimulated lower levels of type Myxovirus A and oligoadenylate synthase in PBMC of asthmatics than control donors. These in vitro studies demonstrate that combinations of drugs commonly used in asthma therapy inhibit both early pro-inflammatory cytokines and key aspects of the type I IFN pathway. These findings suggest that budesonide and formoterol curtail excessive inflammation induced by rhinovirus infections in patients with asthma, but whether this inhibits

  9. The Synthesis of [gamma]-Aminobutyric Acid in Response to Treatments Reducing Cytosolic pH.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crawford, L. A.; Bown, A. W.; Breitkreuz, K. E.; Guinel, F. C.

    1994-03-01

    [gamma]-Aminobutyric acid (GABA) synthesis (L-glutamic acid + H+ -> GABA + CO2) is rapidly stimulated by a variety of stress conditions including hypoxia. Recent literature suggests that GABA production and concomitant H+ consumption ameliorates the cytosolic acidification associated with hypoxia or other stresses. This proposal was investigated using isolated asparagus (Asparagus sprengeri Regel) mesophyll cells. Cell acidification was promoted using hypoxia, H+/L-glutamic acid symport, and addition of butyrate or other permeant weak acids. Sixty minutes of all three treatments stimulated the levels of both intracellular and extracellular GABA by values ranging from 100 to 1800%. At an external pH of 5.0, addition of 5 mM butyrate stimulated an increase in overall GABA level from 3.86 (0.56 [plus or minus] SE) to 20.4 (2.16 [plus or minus] SE) nmol of GABA/106 cell. Butyrate stimulated GABA levels by 200 to 300% within 15 s, and extracellular GABA was observed after 10 min. The acid load due to butyrate addition was assayed by measuring [14C]butyrate uptake. After 45 s of butyrate treatment, H+-consuming GABA production accounted for 45% of the imposed acid load. The cytosolic location of a fluorescent pH probe was confirmed using fluorescent microscopy. Spectrofluorimetry indicated that butyrate addition reduced cytosolic pH by 0.60 units with a half-time of approximately 2 s. The proposal that GABA synthesis ameliorates cytosolic acidification is supported by the data. The possible roles of H+ and Ca2+ in stimulating GABA synthesis are discussed.

  10. Transient response in longitudinal grain size to reduced sediment supply in a large river

    Science.gov (United States)

    Singer, Michael

    2010-05-01

    Bed material grain size is an important degree of freedom in fluvial systems as they adjust to system-wide perturbations such as sediment supply changes. However, little is known about processes and patterns of such adjustment in longitudinal grain size sorting in large rivers. This research uses unprecedented datasets collected in a large fluvial system to investigate transient response to recent supply changes associated with anthropogenic activities. Separate fining trends for gravel and fines, a protracted gravel-sand (G-S) transition, and bed patchiness identified in Singer (2008) were interrogated using output from a hydraulic model with grain size distributions (GSDs) extracted from ~125 cross sections spanning ~400 river kilometers of the Sacramento River, California. The analysis suggests that interactions between hydraulics, bed material sorting, and sediment flux explain these previously identified anomalies. Highest values of sorting occur in the G-S transition and represent the overlap of separate fining trends for gravel and fines, where the long profile is jagged with evidence of progressive incision. Much of the sediment in this poorly sorted zone is organized into patches, where transport apparently occurs as bedload sheets. Patchiness occurs over short length scales leading to strong differences in entrainment and flux, regardless of hydraulic conditions. A modified Shields stress is proposed that is scaled by GSD sorting to improve characterization of entrainment/disentrainment. Sediment flux calculations based on an equation sensitive bed material conditions (Singer and Dunne, 2004) reveal a strong relationship between fine sediment flux and d90, suggesting that the efficiency of fine patch flux controls bed material bed surface roughness. Results are in part consistent with Paola and Seal (1995) suggesting that patches are a result of overlapping pdfs of shear stress and sorting and with Ferguson (2003) in that the final end of the protracted G

  11. Recombinant human erythropoietin reduces plasminogen activator inhibitor and ameliorates pro-inflammatory responses following trauma

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M Mojtahedzadeh

    2011-05-01

    Full Text Available "n  "n Background and the purpose of the study: Besides its hematopoietic effects, erythropoietin (EPO by mobilization of iron and modulation of some inflammatory cytokines has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. The purpose of this study was to evaluate these effects of erythropoietin and its impact on organ function in traumatized patients. "n Methods: Twenty-six ICU-admitted traumatized patients within 24 hrs after trauma were randomly assigned to the EPO (received EPO, 300 units/Kg/day and Control (not received EPO groups. The inflammatory biomarkers including Tumor Necrosis Factor alpha (TNF-α, Interleukin 1 (IL-1, Plasminogen Activator Inhibitor 1 (PAI-1 and Nitrotyrosine were recorded at the admission, 3, 6 and 9 days thereafter. Acute Physiology and Chronic Health Evaluation (APACHE II and Sequential Organ Failure Assessment (SOFA scores were also recorded. "n Results: Among 12 patients (EPO group TNF-α level at the day of 9 (P=0.046, and within EPO group at the days of 3 (P=0.026 ameliorate, 6 (P=0.016, and 9 (P=0.052 were significantly lowered. Level of IL-1 and PAI-1 decreased significantly at days of 3, 6 and 9 post intervention. Also there were significant differences between two groups in the SOFA score during three measured time intervals (the first, third and seventh days. "n Conclusion: From the results of this study it seems that injection of erythrocyte stimulating agent is well tolerated and inhibits the inflammatory response and oxidative stress following trauma.

  12. Response of coccinellid larvae to conspecific and heterospecific larval tracks: a mechanism that reduces cannibalism and intraguild predation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meisner, Matthew H; Harmon, Jason P; Ives, Anthony R

    2011-02-01

    Cannibalism, where one species feeds on individuals of its own species, and intraguild predation (IGP), where a predator feeds on other predatory species, can both pose significant threats to natural enemies and interfere with their biological control of pests. Behavioral mechanisms to avoid these threats, however, could help maintain superior pest control. Here, we ask whether larvae of Coccinella septempunctata (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae) and Harmonia axyridis (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae) respond to larval tracks deposited by the other and whether this behavioral response reduces the threat of cannibalism and IGP. In petri dish experiments, we show that both H. axyridis and C. septempunctata avoid foraging in areas with conspecific larval tracks. Using a method of preventing larvae from depositing tracks, we then demonstrate that the frequency of cannibalism is greater for both species when larvae are prevented from depositing tracks compared with when the tracks are deposited. For multi-species interactions we show in petri dish experiments that C. septempunctata avoids H. axyridis larval tracks but H. axyridis does not avoid C. septempunctata larval tracks, demonstrating an asymmetry in response to larval tracks that parallels the asymmetry in aggressiveness between these species as intraguild predators. On single plants, we show that the presence of H. axyridis larval tracks reduces the risk of IGP by H. axyridis on C. septempunctata. Our study suggests that larval tracks can be used in more ways than previously described, in this case by changing coccinellid larval behavior in a way that reduces cannibalism and IGP.

  13. Fasciola hepatica infection reduces Mycobacterium bovis burden and mycobacterial uptake and suppresses the pro-inflammatory response.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garza-Cuartero, L; O'Sullivan, J; Blanco, A; McNair, J; Welsh, M; Flynn, R J; Williams, D; Diggle, P; Cassidy, J; Mulcahy, G

    2016-07-01

    Bovine tuberculosis (BTB), caused by Mycobacterium bovis, has an annual incidence in cattle of 0.5% in the Republic of Ireland and 4.7% in the UK, despite long-standing eradication programmes being in place. Failure to achieve complete eradication is multifactorial, but the limitations of diagnostic tests are significant complicating factors. Previously, we have demonstrated that Fasciola hepatica infection, highly prevalent in these areas, induced reduced sensitivity of the standard diagnostic tests for BTB in animals co-infected with F. hepatica and M. bovis. This was accompanied by a reduced M. bovis-specific Th1 immune response. We hypothesized that these changes in co-infected animals would be accompanied by enhanced growth of M. bovis. However, we show here that mycobacterial burden in cattle is reduced in animals co-infected with F. hepatica. Furthermore, we demonstrate a lower mycobacterial recovery and uptake in blood monocyte-derived macrophages (MDM) from F. hepatica-infected cattle which is associated with suppression of pro-inflammatory cytokines and a switch to alternative activation of macrophages. However, the cell surface expression of TLR2 and CD14 in MDM from F. hepatica-infected cattle is increased. These findings reflecting the bystander effect of helminth-induced downregulation of pro-inflammatory responses provide insights to understand host-pathogen interactions in co-infection.

  14. The inactivation of RNase G reduces the Stenotrophomonas maltophilia susceptibility to quinolones by triggering the heat shock response.

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    Alejandra eBernardini

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available Quinolone resistance is usually due to mutations in the genes encoding bacterial topoisomerases. However different reports have shown that neither clinical quinolone resistant isolates nor in vitro obtained S. maltophilia mutants present mutations in such genes. The mechanisms so far described consist on efflux pumps' overexpression. Our objective is to get information on novel mechanisms of S. maltophilia quinolone resistance. For this purpose, a transposon-insertion mutant library was obtained in S. maltophilia D457.. One mutant presenting reduced susceptibility to nalidixic acid was selected. Inverse PCR showed that the inactivated gene encodes RNase G. Complementation of the mutant with wild-type RNase G allele restored the susceptibility to quinolones. Transcriptomic and real-time RT-PCR analyses showed that several genes encoding heat-shock response proteins were expressed at higher levels in the RNase defective mutant than in the wild-type strain. In agreement with this situation, heat-shock reduces the S. maltophilia susceptibility to quinolone. We can then conclude that the inactivation of the RNase G reduces the susceptibility of S. maltophilia to quinolones, most likely by regulating the expression of heat-shock response genes. Heat-shock induces a transient phenotype of quinolone resistance in S. maltophilia.

  15. The reduced state of the plastoquinone pool is required for chloroplast-mediated stomatal closure in response to calcium stimulation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Wen-Hua; He, En-Ming; Chen, Juan; Guo, Ying; Chen, Juan; Liu, Xiang; Zheng, Hai-Lei

    2016-04-01

    Besides their participation in photosynthesis, leaf chloroplasts function in plant responses to stimuli, yet how they direct stimulus-induced stomatal movement remains elusive. Here, we showed that over-reduction of the plastoquinone (PQ) pool by dibromothymoquinone (DBMIB) was closely associated with stomatal closure in plants which required chloroplastic H2O2 generation in the mesophyll. External application of H2 O2 reduced the PQ pool, whereas the cell-permeable reactive oxygen species (ROS) scavenger N-acetylcysteine (NAC) reversed the DBMIB-induced over-reduction of the PQ pool and stomatal closure. Mesophyll chloroplasts are key players of extracellular Ca(2+) (Ca(2+)o)-induced stomatal closure, but when treated with either 3-(3',4'-dichlorophenyl)-1,1-dimethylurea (DCMU) or NAC they failed to facilitate Ca(2+)o-induced stomatal closure due to the inhibition of chloroplastic H2 O2 synthesis in mesophyll. Similarly, the Arabidopsis electron transfer chain-related mutants npq4-1, stn7 and cas-1 exhibited diverse responses to Ca(2+)o or DBMIB. Transcriptome analysis also demonstrated that the PQ pool signaling pathway shared common responsive genes with the H2 O2 signaling pathway. These results implicated a mechanism for chloroplast-mediated stomatal closure involving the generation of mesophyll chloroplastic H2O2 based on the reduced state of the PQ pool, which is calcium-sensing receptor (CAS) and LHCII phosphorylation dependent.

  16. The induction of a radiation-induced bystander effect in fish transcends taxonomic group and trophic level.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Richard W; Seymour, Colin B; Moccia, Richard D; Hinton, Thomas G; Mothersill, Carmel E

    2013-04-01

    To extend the investigations of bystander effect induction in fish of the same species as the irradiated fish, to bystander effect induction between fish species and between trophic levels. To investigate interspecies bystander effect induction, zebrafish and medaka were irradiated with a 0.5 Gy X-ray dose and then swum with non-irradiated fish of the same and opposite species. To investigate trophic level bystander effect induction, California blackworms were irradiated with the same X-ray dose and then fed to non-irradiated rainbow trout. Reductions in clonogenic survival of the HPV-G (non-transformed human keratinocytes, immortalized with the human papilloma virus) reporter cell line, treated with tissue explant media, revealed that zebrafish and medaka induced a pro-apoptotic bystander effect in the other species and that, in trout, the normally anti-apoptotic effect caused by the consumption of non-irradiated blackworms was significantly reduced or lost if the blackworms had been irradiated. These results are the first to show that a radiation- induced bystander effect can transcend taxonomic group and trophic level in fish. This provides further evidence that bystander signals are widespread and conserved and may be transmitted through an ecosystem, as well as between individuals of the same species.

  17. Birds help plants: a meta-analysis of top-down trophic cascades caused by avian predators.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mäntylä, Elina; Klemola, Tero; Laaksonen, Toni

    2011-01-01

    The tritrophic interactions between plants, herbivores and avian predators are complex and prone to trophic cascades. We conducted a meta-analysis of original articles that have studied birds as predators of invertebrate herbivores, to compare top-down trophic cascades with different plant responses from different environments and climatic areas. Our search found 29 suitable articles, with a total of 81 separate experimental study set-ups. The meta-analysis revealed that plants benefited from the presence of birds. A significant reduction was observed in the level of leaf damage and plant mortality. The presence of birds also positively affected the amount of plant biomass, whereas effects on plant growth were negligible. There were no differences in the effects between agricultural and natural environments. Similarly, plants performed better in all climatic areas (tropical, temperate and boreal) when birds were present. Moreover, both mature plants and saplings gained benefits from the presence of birds. Our results show that birds cause top-down trophic cascades and thus they play an integral role in ecosystems.

  18. Adalimumab reduces hand bone loss in rheumatoid arthritis independent of clinical response: Subanalysis of the PREMIER study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elden Aake

    2011-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Anti-TNF therapy has been shown to reduce radiographic joint damage in rheumatoid arthritis (RA independent of clinical response. This has previously not been examined for periarticular bone loss, the other characteristic feature of bone involvement in RA. The objective of this study was to examine if treatment with the TNF-α inhibitor adalimumab also could reduce periarticular bone loss in RA patients independent of disease activity. Methods RA patients were recruited from the PREMIER study and included 214 patients treated with methotrexate (MTX plus adalimumab and 188 patients treated with MTX monotherapy. Periarticular bone loss was assessed by digital X-ray radiogrammetry metacarpal cortical index (DXR-MCI. Change in DXR-MCI was evaluated in patients with different levels of clinical response, as assessed by changes in DAS28 score at 52 weeks and in mean C-reactive protein (CRP levels during follow-up. Results In the MTX group, there was a greater median DXR-MCI loss among patients with moderate and high disease activity compared to those in remission or with low disease activity (-3.3% vs. -2.2%, p = 0.01. In contrast, periarticular bone loss was independent of disease activity (-1.9% vs. -2.4%, p = 0.99 in the combination group. In the MTX group patients with a mean CRP of ≥ 10 mg/l lost significantly more DXR-MCI than patients with low CRP (-3.1% vs. -1.9%, p Conclusion Adalimumab in combination with MTX reduces periarticular bone loss independently of clinical response. These results support the hypothesis that TNF-α stimulates the osteoclast not only by the inflammatory pathway but do also have a direct effect on the osteoclast. Trial Registration ClinicalTrials (NCT: NCT001195663

  19. Bystander normal human fibroblasts reduce damage response in radiation targeted cancer cells through intercellular ROS level modulation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Widel, Maria, E-mail: maria.widel@polsl.pl [Biosystem Group, Department of Automatics, Electronics and Informatics, Silesian University of Technology, 16 Akademicka Street, 44-100 Gliwice (Poland); Przybyszewski, Waldemar M., E-mail: wmp@io.gliwice.pl [Center for Translational Research and Molecular Biology, Maria Sklodowska-Curie Memorial Cancer Center and Institute of Oncology, Branch Gliwice, 15 Wybrzeze Armii Krajowej, 44-101 Gliwice (Poland); Cieslar-Pobuda, Artur [Biosystem Group, Department of Automatics, Electronics and Informatics, Silesian University of Technology, 16 Akademicka Street, 44-100 Gliwice (Poland); Saenko, Yuri V. [Department of Pharmacology and Biochemistry, Center of Nanotechnology and Materials, Ulyanovsk State University (Russian Federation); Rzeszowska-Wolny, Joanna [Biosystem Group, Department of Automatics, Electronics and Informatics, Silesian University of Technology, 16 Akademicka Street, 44-100 Gliwice (Poland)

    2012-03-01

    The radiation-induced bystander effect is a well-established phenomenon which results in damage in non-irradiated cells in response to signaling from irradiated cells. Since communication between irradiated and bystander cells could be reciprocal, we examined the mutual bystander response between irradiated cells and co-cultured with them non-irradiated recipients. Using a transwell culture system, irradiated human melanoma (Me45) cells were co-cultured with non-irradiated Me45 cells or normal human dermal fibroblasts (NHDF) and vice versa. The frequency of micronuclei and of apoptosis, ROS level, and mitochondrial membrane potential were used as the endpoints. Irradiated Me45 and NHDF cells induced conventional bystander effects detected as modest increases of the frequency of micronuclei and apoptosis in both recipient neighbors; the increase of apoptosis was especially high in NHDF cells co-cultured with irradiated Me45 cells. However, the frequencies of micronuclei and apoptosis in irradiated Me45 cells co-cultured with NHDF cells were significantly reduced in comparison with those cultured alone. This protective effect was not observed when irradiated melanomas were co-cultured with non-irradiated cells of the same line, or when irradiated NHDF fibroblasts were co-cultured with bystander melanomas. The increase of micronuclei and apoptosis in irradiated Me45 cells was paralleled by an increase in the level of intracellular reactive oxygen species (ROS), which was reduced significantly when they were co-cultured for 24 h with NHDF cells. A small but significant elevation of ROS level in NHDF cells shortly after irradiation was also reduced by co-culture with non-irradiated NHDF cells. We propose that in response to signals from irradiated cells, non-irradiated NHDF cells trigger rescue signals, whose nature remains to be elucidated, which modify the redox status in irradiated cells. This inverse bystander effect may potentially have implications in clinical

  20. Bed rest reduces metabolic protein content and abolishes exercise-induced mRNA responses in human skeletal muscle

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jørgensen, Stine Ringholm; Biensø, Rasmus S; Kiilerich, Kristian

    2011-01-01

    Background: The aim was to test the hypothesis that one week of bed rest will reduce mitochondrial number and expression and activity of oxidative proteins in human skeletal muscle, but that exercise-induced intracellular signaling as well as mRNA and microRNA (miR) responses are maintained after......-legged knee extensor exercise performed before and after bed rest. Results: Maximal oxygen uptake decreased 5% and exercise endurance decreased non-significantly 25% by bed rest. Bed rest reduced skeletal muscle mitochondrial DNA/nuclear DNA content 15%, hexokinase II and sirtuin 1 protein content ~45%, 3...... bed rest. Research Design and Methods: Twelve young, healthy, male subjects completed 7 days of bed rest with vastus lateralis muscle biopsies taken before and after bed rest. In addition, muscle biopsies were obtained from 6 of the subjects prior to, immediately after and 3h after 45 min one...

  1. Approaches to reduce the glycemic response of gluten-free products: in vivo and in vitro studies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Capriles, V D; Arêas, J A G

    2016-03-01

    This article aims to discuss the current approaches used to reduce the postprandial glycemic response (GR) of starchy gluten-free products (GFP) and to provide some further prospects. The GR is evaluated through in vivo trials to determine the glycemic index (GI) and the glycemic load (GL) of foods or using the in vitro starch digestibility method to predict the GI. The reviewed studies demonstrated that a reduction in the GR of GFP can be achieved by replacing traditionally used refined flours and starches with nutrient-dense alternative raw materials due to an increase in dietary fiber, resistant starch and protein contents, which can alter the rate of starch digestion, reduce the GI and dilute the amount of available carbohydrate; both the factors contribute to reduce the GL. The addition of viscous dietary fibers could also be a successful way to reduce the GR of GFP. Some studies have demonstrated the potential of germination of GF grains and sourdough fermentation in decreasing the GR of GF bread. Further studies could evaluate alternative GF flours, soluble fibers, resistant starch, and other formulation factors that may affect the GR of different types of GFP. New studies should be performed to test and optimize processing methods by considering the reduction of GR of GFP. Another key aspect for further investigation is the confirmation of the promising results obtained through in vitro assays by in vivo GI evaluation.

  2. Berberine Attenuates Myocardial Ischemia/Reperfusion Injury by Reducing Oxidative Stress and Inflammation Response: Role of Silent Information Regulator 1

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Liming Yu

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Berberine (BBR exerts potential protective effect against myocardial ischemia/reperfusion (MI/R injury. Activation of silent information regulator 1 (SIRT1 signaling attenuates MI/R injury by reducing oxidative damage and inflammation response. This study investigated the antioxidative and anti-inflammatory effects of BBR treatment in MI/R condition and elucidated its potential mechanisms. Sprague-Dawley rats were treated with BBR in the absence or presence of the SIRT1 inhibitor sirtinol (Stnl and then subjected to MI/R injury. BBR conferred cardioprotective effects by improving postischemic cardiac function, decreasing infarct size, reducing apoptotic index, diminishing serum creatine kinase and lactate dehydrogenase levels, upregulating SIRT1, Bcl-2 expressions, and downregulating Bax and caspase-3 expressions. Stnl attenuated these effects by inhibiting SIRT1 signaling. BBR treatment also reduced myocardium superoxide generation, gp91phox expression, malondialdehyde (MDA level, and cardiac inflammatory markers and increased myocardium superoxide dismutase (SOD level. However, these effects were also inhibited by Stnl. Consistently, BBR conferred similar antioxidative and anti-inflammatory effects against simulated ischemia reperfusion injury in cultured H9C2 cardiomyocytes. SIRT1 siRNA administration also abolished these effects. In summary, our results demonstrate that BBR significantly improves post-MI/R cardiac function recovery and reduces infarct size against MI/R injury possibly due to its strong antioxidative and anti-inflammatory activity. Additionally, SIRT1 signaling plays a key role in this process.

  3. Glibenclamide reduces pro-inflammatory cytokine production by neutrophils of diabetes patients in response to bacterial infection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kewcharoenwong, Chidchamai; Rinchai, Darawan; Utispan, Kusumawadee; Suwannasaen, Duangchan; Bancroft, Gregory J.; Ato, Manabu; Lertmemongkolchai, Ganjana

    2013-11-01

    Type 2 diabetes mellitus is a major risk factor for melioidosis, which is caused by Burkholderia pseudomallei. Our previous study has shown that polymorphonuclear neutrophils (PMNs) from diabetic subjects exhibited decreased functions in response to B. pseudomallei. Here we investigated the mechanisms regulating cytokine secretion of PMNs from diabetic patients which might contribute to patient susceptibility to bacterial infections. Purified PMNs from diabetic patients who had been treated with glibenclamide (an ATP-sensitive potassium channel blocker for anti-diabetes therapy), showed reduction of interleukin (IL)-1β and IL-8 secretion when exposed to B. pseudomallei. Additionally, reduction of these pro-inflammatory cytokines occurred when PMNs from diabetic patients were treated in vitro with glibenclamide. These findings suggest that glibenclamide might be responsible for the increased susceptibility of diabetic patients, with poor glycemic control, to bacterial infections as a result of its effect on reducing IL-1β production by PMNs.

  4. Cuprizone inhibits demyelinating leukomyelitis by reducing immune responses without virus exacerbation in an infectious model of multiple sclerosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herder, Vanessa; Hansmann, Florian; Stangel, Martin; Schaudien, Dirk; Rohn, Karl; Baumgärtner, Wolfgang; Beineke, Andreas

    2012-03-01

    Multiple sclerosis is one of the most common demyelinating central nervous system diseases in young adults. Theiler's murine encephalomyelitis (TME) is a widely used virus-induced murine model for human myelin disorders. Immunosuppressive approaches generally reduce antiviral immunity and therefore increase virus dissemination with clinical worsening. In the present study, the progressive course of TME was significantly delayed due to a five-week cuprizone feeding period. Cuprizone was able to minimize demyelinating leukomyelitis without virus exacerbation. This phenomenon is supposed to be a consequence of selective inhibition of detrimental inflammatory responses with maintained protective immunity against the virus.

  5. The effects of overfeeding on the neuronal response to visual food cues in thin and reduced-obese individuals.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marc-Andre Cornier

    Full Text Available The regulation of energy intake is a complex process involving the integration of